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Health Club Management

Health Club Management

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UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
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Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

People profile: Andy Tee

Co-founder, V1be

Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 1
Andy Tee
Andy Tee
In London, people are familiar with the boutique concept, but elsewhere it’s still relatively new, so initially it was a challenge to educate people in Manchester about our benefits, when they were used to paying budget club prices

What is the concept and what do you do differently?
V1BE is a boutique, treadmill-based HIIT studio in Manchester, offering a smart fitout and music specially designed to match the workouts. There’s also a boxing element to some of our classes.

We aim to be inclusive by using MyZone fitness tracking belts. Everyone can measure their own performance and work at an appropriate level.

One person may be running at 10 mph on the treadmill, while the person next to them could be walking with an incline, but both of them will be working at the appropriate effort level to get some results.

Unlike other boutiques, we’re encouraging users to sign up for a membership rather than pay as you go, as we like the cashflow which recurring payments bring. To pay as you go costs £15 per class, while five classes a month costs £45 via direct debit and unlimited access is £95.

Who is behind the concept?
There are three of us: me, Gareth Evans and Kevin Scott. I was a director at Simply Gym, a budget chain where we went from start-up to 12 clubs in five years. Kevin was former chief executive of the Harlands Group and Gareth has over 10 years’ experience owning and operating budget and mid-range clubs.

Why did you choose boutique?
Having ridden the budget wave, we felt the market was moving towards boutiques and the timing was right to make the move into this sector.

When and how did you set about doing it?
The club launched in March 2017, prior to which we’d spent a year doing market research, locating our first site, setting up the company, the concept and the brand.

What were the main challenges?
In London, people are familiar with the boutique concept, but elsewhere it’s still relatively new, so initially it was a challenge to educate people in Manchester about our benefits, when they were used to paying budget club prices.

With high-end pricing, the product and service have to be spot on. You don’t have the sleeping membership which the budget sector enjoys. If people aren’t using and enjoying the experience – not to mention seeing some results – their payments soon stop!

Who is your target market?
We’re finding that a higher percentage of females are using the club, and generally an age range between 21 and 35. The vast majority live or work in Manchester city centre. That said we’re genuinely trying to be inclusive.

Have you made any changes since you opened?
I think it’s important to constantly learn and evolve. We’re conscious that as the studio is class-based – six to seven a day – there’s lots of down time.

We’ve therefore opened up the studio for free training slots throughout the day, as well as power yoga which has proven to be very popular.

What are your plans for the future?
The second site is lined up for this year. However, the main focus is to franchise V1BE and the model has been set up with this in mind. Outline discussions are already taking place.

We also see the potential for a ‘club within a club’ scenario. There are traditional health clubs out there with spare space and capacity where we feel there would be a mutual benefit to having a V1BE on site.

V1BE has been set up with a view to franchising the boutique model in the near future
V1BE has been set up with a view to franchising the boutique model in the near future
A higher percentage of V1BE members are women, aged from 21-35
A higher percentage of V1BE members are women, aged from 21-35
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/imagesX/411241_927320.png
'In London, people are familiar with the boutique concept, but elsewhere it's still relatively new, so it was a challenge to educate people in Manchester about our benefits' – Andy Tee talks about founding V1BE
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features

People profile: Andy Tee

Co-founder, V1be

Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 1
Andy Tee
Andy Tee
In London, people are familiar with the boutique concept, but elsewhere it’s still relatively new, so initially it was a challenge to educate people in Manchester about our benefits, when they were used to paying budget club prices

What is the concept and what do you do differently?
V1BE is a boutique, treadmill-based HIIT studio in Manchester, offering a smart fitout and music specially designed to match the workouts. There’s also a boxing element to some of our classes.

We aim to be inclusive by using MyZone fitness tracking belts. Everyone can measure their own performance and work at an appropriate level.

One person may be running at 10 mph on the treadmill, while the person next to them could be walking with an incline, but both of them will be working at the appropriate effort level to get some results.

Unlike other boutiques, we’re encouraging users to sign up for a membership rather than pay as you go, as we like the cashflow which recurring payments bring. To pay as you go costs £15 per class, while five classes a month costs £45 via direct debit and unlimited access is £95.

Who is behind the concept?
There are three of us: me, Gareth Evans and Kevin Scott. I was a director at Simply Gym, a budget chain where we went from start-up to 12 clubs in five years. Kevin was former chief executive of the Harlands Group and Gareth has over 10 years’ experience owning and operating budget and mid-range clubs.

Why did you choose boutique?
Having ridden the budget wave, we felt the market was moving towards boutiques and the timing was right to make the move into this sector.

When and how did you set about doing it?
The club launched in March 2017, prior to which we’d spent a year doing market research, locating our first site, setting up the company, the concept and the brand.

What were the main challenges?
In London, people are familiar with the boutique concept, but elsewhere it’s still relatively new, so initially it was a challenge to educate people in Manchester about our benefits, when they were used to paying budget club prices.

With high-end pricing, the product and service have to be spot on. You don’t have the sleeping membership which the budget sector enjoys. If people aren’t using and enjoying the experience – not to mention seeing some results – their payments soon stop!

Who is your target market?
We’re finding that a higher percentage of females are using the club, and generally an age range between 21 and 35. The vast majority live or work in Manchester city centre. That said we’re genuinely trying to be inclusive.

Have you made any changes since you opened?
I think it’s important to constantly learn and evolve. We’re conscious that as the studio is class-based – six to seven a day – there’s lots of down time.

We’ve therefore opened up the studio for free training slots throughout the day, as well as power yoga which has proven to be very popular.

What are your plans for the future?
The second site is lined up for this year. However, the main focus is to franchise V1BE and the model has been set up with this in mind. Outline discussions are already taking place.

We also see the potential for a ‘club within a club’ scenario. There are traditional health clubs out there with spare space and capacity where we feel there would be a mutual benefit to having a V1BE on site.

V1BE has been set up with a view to franchising the boutique model in the near future
V1BE has been set up with a view to franchising the boutique model in the near future
A higher percentage of V1BE members are women, aged from 21-35
A higher percentage of V1BE members are women, aged from 21-35
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/imagesX/411241_927320.png
'In London, people are familiar with the boutique concept, but elsewhere it's still relatively new, so it was a challenge to educate people in Manchester about our benefits' – Andy Tee talks about founding V1BE
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PureGym is set to become the second largest fitness operator in Europe, after revealing plans ...
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The Glass House Retreat, a new eco-friendly health and wellness retreat, has opened in Bulphan, ...
Latest News
A large-scale study on genetics has shown that being more physically active reduces the risk ...
Latest News
The Gym Group has confirmed plans to roll out a new small box format in ...
Latest News
Representatives from the three main political parties have backed the view that physical activity has ...
Latest News
Life Leisure is expanding its facility portfolio with the launch of an independent boutique fitness ...
Latest News
Almost half of children and young people (46.8 per cent) in England are doing the ...
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Featured supplier: Gympass expands in Ireland with flagship operator Gym Plus
Gympass, a leader in corporate fitness sales, has expanded its network to Ireland following a new partnership with Gym Plus.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Wattbike Studio makes lasting impact on business at Holme Pierrepont
Since installing its new Wattbike indoor cycling studio last year, Holme Pierrepont Country Park, a Serco Leisure site that’s the home of the National Water Sports Centre, has seen a significant increase in cycle studio usage.
Video Gallery
Harlands Group testimonial
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Harlands Group - Testimonial from 'Unity Leisure'. Read more
More videos:
Company profiles
Company profile: Eleiko
We build upon our six-decade legacy in weightlifting, fuelled by our unwavering commitment to innovation, ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Ecore
Ecore transforms reclaimed materials into unique performance surfaces that make people’s lives better. Ecore has ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Trade associations
International SPA Association - iSPA: Trade associations
Fitness software
Go Do.Fitness: Fitness software
Exercise equipment
Matrix Fitness: Exercise equipment
Direct debit solutions
Debit Finance Collections: Direct debit solutions
Spa software
ResortSuite: Spa software
Flooring
Total Vibration Solutions / TVS Sports Surfaces: Flooring
Fitness equipment
FunXtion International BV: Fitness equipment
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Locking solutions
Ojmar: Locking solutions
Whole body cryotherapy
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab: Whole body cryotherapy
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
10-12 Dec 2019
tbc, Fort Lauderdale, United States
Diary dates
21-23 Jan 2020
Harrogate Convention Centre, Harrogate, United Kingdom
Diary dates
28-30 Jan 2020
Ericsson Exhibition Hall, Ricoh Arena, Coventry, United Kingdom
Diary dates
29-30 Jan 2020
Holiday Inn San Francisco-Golden Gateway, San Francisco, United States
Diary dates
23-25 Mar 2020
Hilton, Barcelona, Spain
Diary dates
25-26 Mar 2020
Eastwood Hall, Nottingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
04 Jun 2020
Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel & Country Club, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
10-27 Jun 2020
tbc, Pinggu, China
Diary dates
13 Jun 2020
Worldwide, Various,
Diary dates
17-18 Jun 2020
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
30-31 Oct 2020
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
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