Gold’s Gym Makes More Changes

IRVING, TX -- More than two months after David Schnabel’s resignation as CEO of Gold’s Gym International (GGI), the company has made more sweeping changes at its corporate headquarters.

Chief Operating Officer Mike Feinman, who joined GGI from 24 Hour Fitness less than a year ago, is no longer with the company. GGI eliminated Feinman’s position, according to a GGI memo sent to franchisees last week by new CEO James Weaver. Also, Chief Financial Officer Randy Shultz is leaving Gold’s, effective Feb. 7, to become a principal with an equity investment company in Philadelphia.

“We have been working diligently to streamline and flatten our organizational structure so that we can more efficiently and effectively provide quality support to our field operations and to our customers,” Weaver said in the memo.

In lieu of a chief operating officer, David Fowler was announced as Gold’s senior divisional vice president. Fowler joined GGI in April 2007 as the vice president of eastern operations after serving as the chief operating officer for Crunch, where he completed a nationwide merger of four club brands. Fowler also was previously the director of operations at Equinox Fitness.

Also as part of the transition, Aaron Watkins was promoted to senior vice president of finance and accounting.

The departures of Feinman and Shultz will have little impact on Gold’s Gym franchisees, says Blair McHaney, president of the Gold’s Gym Franchisee Association. McHaney added that he’s been impressed with Weaver since he took over as CEO.

“Here’s a guy that’s just been outstanding,” McHaney says. “James is a guy who likes to have as few degrees of separation as he possibly can between him and what’s happening with the customer. He’s unafraid of what the customer has to say. He’s a guy who pays attention. Our hope [since Weaver took over] was to be involved in decision-making processes and then together make smart decisions to help franchisees grow. All of those things are currently happening.”

Weaver announced two more personnel moves at the Irving, TX, headquarters. Nate Ungarean, serving as director of corporate development, will assume the management of the customer care, retail sales, corporate sales, fitness and Gold’s group exercise departments. Ungarean will work with Fowler to support the company’s field operations and special projects.

Also, Steve Burley joins GGI as its new controller. Burley had been at TRT Holdings, the parent company of Gold’s Gym.

“My primary focus is to strengthen Gold’s Gym market leadership position and help us continue to create the customer service experience that our members, employees, franchisees and consumers around the world expect from us,” Weaver said in the memo.

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