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Planet Fitness Still an Attractive Company for Buyers, Source Says

NEWINGTON, NHPlanet Fitness may not have been able to consummate its deal with private equity firm Goode Partners LLC, but one industry observer indicates that this might not be the last time Planet Fitness is involved in sale discussions.

“Planet Fitness will continue to be an attractive investment, by purchase, acquisition or takeover,” one industry source says. “The company is still in a dramatic organic growth trend, and net profits to franchisees are very strong.”

Last month, Club Industry learned that the proposed minority sale between the Newington, NH-based company and the New York-based private equity firm fell through. Sources say that no announcement of a deal was made during the Planet Fitness franchisee conference in May in Las Vegas.

Planet Fitness confirmed in an e-mail to Club Industry last month that the minority partnership deal is “definitely dead.” David Oddi, co-founder and partner of Goode Partners LLC, declined to comment on the proposed sale.

In March, sources told Club Industry that a letter of intent had been signed by Planet Fitness and Goode Partners. In the proposed sale, Planet Fitness CEO Mike Grondahl, his brother, Marc Grondahl, and COO Chris Rondeau were expected to retain a majority interest in the company.

“I know they were very close,” one source says. “My impression is it was a done deal. It really surprised me [that the deal fell through]. I'm sure they have their reasons.”

Planet Fitness also confirmed there were discussions of a deal with Roark Capital Group, Atlanta, but no letter of intent was signed.

In April, Planet Fitness announced it had hired Jayne Conway as its new chief financial officer. Conway was previously the CFO of Gulf Oil LP and spent 10 years with Dunkin' Brands. Marc Grondahl had served as Planet Fitness' CFO but made way for Conway and retained part ownership of the company.

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