Seventeen former Gold's Gyms in Utah rebranded as VASA Fitness last week.
The Gold's Gyms were operated by Body Firm Aerobics Inc., Orem, UT, which had been on Club Industry's Top 100 Clubs list for several years. The company last appeared on the Top 100 list in 2011 at No. 26 with an estimated annual revenue of $48 million. The company has not submitted financial information to Club Industry in subsequent years.
Jessie Medina, a spokesperson for VASA Fitness, told Club Industry that Troy Peterson and Scott Felsted, who had operated the Gold's Gyms at Body Firm Aerobics, maintain some ownership in the rebranded clubs, which also have new investors.
Those new investors, as announced Monday, are Silver Oak Services Partners, a private equity firm based in Evanston, IL. In a press release, Silver Oak Services Partners confirmed 17 clubs are in its investment, with a new club opening in December. Memberships at VASA Fitness clubs are now $9.99 to $19.99, so this is another rebranding of former Gold's Gyms to the high-volume, low-price model. In recent years, Gold's Gym franchisees have converted to Vent Fitness, Fitness Connection, Max Fitness, Xperience Fitness and Fitness SF.
Silver Oak said Felsted and Peterson would continue in their current roles as CEO and COO, respectively.
"We couldn't be more excited about our partnership with Silver Oak and the launch of our new brand, VASA Fitness," Felsted said in a statement. "We have gotten to know [Silver Oak Managing Partner Dan Hill] and the Silver Oak team over the past six years and are very optimistic about what we can collectively achieve with VASA. They understand the health club space and their expertise in growing businesses like ours will be valuable as we look to improve our product and expand into new markets."
Medina declined to disclose the price of the acquisition, which also was not disclosed in Monday's press release.
"We wanted to rebrand and take the company a different direction," Medina told Club Industry in an email. "We're making many changes on the inside (culture, training, benefits) and outside (brand, gyms, customer service). Having our own brand gives us more freedom to take our company the direction we want."
The conversion does not include all Gold's Gyms in the state of Utah. According to the Gold's Gym's website, the company still has seven gyms in Utah. A spokesperson for Gold's Gym, Dallas, has not responded to a request for comment.
The VASA Fitness clubs include cardio cinemas, a turf section for functional training, weight machines, free weights, group exercise classes, relaxation areas with massage beds and tanning. The term "VASA" is Latin for vessel, Medina says.
"We want fitness to be personal," Medina says. "It's your vessel, your body, and VASA is your gym. We want people to pursue fitness whichever way motivates them, and that's why we are adding more to our gyms so there is something for everyone."