Orangetheory Fitness Gets Expansion Boost with Growth Equity Investment

Orangetheory Fitness just got a capital infusion of an undisclosed sum to help it with its plans to grow to 700 studios by 2017 Photo courtesy Orangetheory
<p>Orangetheory Fitness just got a capital infusion of an undisclosed sum to help it with its plans to grow to 700 studios by 2017. (Photo courtesy Orangetheory.)</p>

To help it toward its goal of opening more than 300 studios by 2017, Orangetheory Fitness, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, received growth equity investment in an undisclosed sum from an affiliate of Roark Capital Group, an Atlanta-based private equity firm that focuses on investing in the franchise industry, Orangetheory announced. 

"We decided to engage Roark as a strategic investor to support us as we continue to experience rapid growth in the U.S. and internationally, as well as expand our product and service quality," said Dave Long, co-founder and chief executive officer of Orangetheory Fitness. "Our relationship with Roark will strengthen our mission to deliver proven fitness results for a healthier world." 

Ultimate Fitness Group LLC remains as owner of the company, but the affiliate of Roark Capital Group will be a minority investor, according to an Orangetheory spokesperson.

The Orangetheory Fitness management team, including Long, will remain unchanged and continue to lead the company. Roark Capital managing directors, Erik Morris and Steve Romaniello, will join the board of directors and provide strategic counsel and support. Additionally, this new partnership will enable Orangetheory Fitness to improve its systems and processes, while bringing its workout to millions across the globe, the company said.

Dave Long, CEO of Orangetheory Fitness, will remain with the company along with the rest of the management team, according to the announcement. (Photo courtesy Orangetheory Fitness.)

​Orangetheory Fitness was founded in 2009 by Ellen Latham. Long and Jerome Kern came on board with franchising experience and began franchising the heart-rate based workout. Now, Orangetheory has more than 360 studios in 36 states and seven countries, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Colombia.

The fitness franchise is on track to open one studio per day worldwide and reach 700 studios by 2017.

In July 2015, Long told Club Industry that he projected to have 500 to 550 clubs open and operating by the end of 2016.

Long also told Club Industry at the time that the company had $8 million in revenue in 2014, and he was projecting $20 million to $25 million in revenue in 2015. 

"The founders and leadership team at Orangetheory have built a terrific brand that is generating amazing results," Morris said. "Their culture and commitment to franchisee success aligns with Roark's core philosophies. The corporate team, area representatives and franchisees are incredibly talented and strong, and we're excited to help contribute to the brand's success."

Roark Capital Group is a private equity firm that focuses on investing in franchise and multi-unit business. Its affiliates have invested in more than 50 franchise/multi-unit brands with approximately 22,000 units in 75 countries. Its portfolio of brands operate in the fitness, wellness, restaurant, retail, consumer and business services sectors. Some of these brands include Massage Envy, Arby's, Carl's Jr., Primrose Schools, Batteries Plus and Driven Brands.

"We specifically look for industry leading brands, like Orangetheory, with attractive performance, talented management teams and growth opportunities. The explosive growth Orangetheory has experienced in just five years is extremely impressive," Romaniello said. "We look forward to being a part of their winning team."

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