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UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

News

EuropeActive expresses ‘regret’ over IHRSA’s new Brussels office

EuropeActive has broken its silence in the debate over IHRSA’s decision to expand its European presence with a new Brussels office, expressing ‘regret’ over what it calls a missed opportunity for closer collaboration between the two organisations.

IHRSA’s announcement last month that it would open a new office in Brussels – which will be operated by management company MCI – was met with a frosty response from some sections of the European fitness industry.

Former ukactive CEO David Stalker blasted the move as a “a waste of everyone's time” and said it would lead to unnecessary overlap with EuropeActive’s efforts in promoting the physical activity sector to European policymakers.

“The bottom line is that Europe is now a bigger market than the US. It deserves to be served by a body dedicated to its cause, not one that sees the continent of Europe solely as a market for expansion,” wrote Stalker in a letter to Health Club Management.

Now EuropeActive has had its say on the matter, with a statement issued on Wednesday (17 February) lamenting IHRSA’s decision, but pledging to continue in its own work representing the European fitness market.

“We expressed last year our intention and wishes for a closer collaboration with the global fitness association IHRSA,” said EuropeActive.

“The departure of IHRSA’s Europe Director (Hans Muench) was a unique moment in time to join forces and to support the European industry through EuropeActive. It is a regret that this moment has not been seized by our American friends.”

EuropeActive also highlighted its ongoing collaboration with FIBO (which has usurped IHRSA’s own event to become the world’s largest trade show) as evidence of its ability to create a European “network community”. Somewhat pointedly, it added: “Both FIBO and EuropeActive implicitly understand the need for cooperation and to avoid duplication and messaging which is why both organisations are so successful.”

For its part, IHRSA has said it believes the new Brussels office will be beneficial “to the entire industry.”

Writing to Health Club Management in response to Stalker’s letter, IHRSA VP of marketing and international operations Cathy McNeil said the organisation is open to working alongside other bodies on symbiotic projects.

“We will also continue to collaborate with other organisations that serve the broader fitness industry wherever it is beneficial to the organisations involved as well as to the industry as a whole,” she wrote.

“For example, IHRSA is a financial sponsor of the 2016 European Market Research Report being compiled by Deloitte for EuropeActive.”

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EuropeActive has broken its silence in the debate over IHRSA’s decision to expand its European presence with a new Brussels office, expressing ‘regret’ over what it calls a missed opportunity for closer collaboration between the two organisations.
HAF,FIT,IND
THUMB8263_375132.jpg
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News

EuropeActive expresses ‘regret’ over IHRSA’s new Brussels office

EuropeActive has broken its silence in the debate over IHRSA’s decision to expand its European presence with a new Brussels office, expressing ‘regret’ over what it calls a missed opportunity for closer collaboration between the two organisations.

IHRSA’s announcement last month that it would open a new office in Brussels – which will be operated by management company MCI – was met with a frosty response from some sections of the European fitness industry.

Former ukactive CEO David Stalker blasted the move as a “a waste of everyone's time” and said it would lead to unnecessary overlap with EuropeActive’s efforts in promoting the physical activity sector to European policymakers.

“The bottom line is that Europe is now a bigger market than the US. It deserves to be served by a body dedicated to its cause, not one that sees the continent of Europe solely as a market for expansion,” wrote Stalker in a letter to Health Club Management.

Now EuropeActive has had its say on the matter, with a statement issued on Wednesday (17 February) lamenting IHRSA’s decision, but pledging to continue in its own work representing the European fitness market.

“We expressed last year our intention and wishes for a closer collaboration with the global fitness association IHRSA,” said EuropeActive.

“The departure of IHRSA’s Europe Director (Hans Muench) was a unique moment in time to join forces and to support the European industry through EuropeActive. It is a regret that this moment has not been seized by our American friends.”

EuropeActive also highlighted its ongoing collaboration with FIBO (which has usurped IHRSA’s own event to become the world’s largest trade show) as evidence of its ability to create a European “network community”. Somewhat pointedly, it added: “Both FIBO and EuropeActive implicitly understand the need for cooperation and to avoid duplication and messaging which is why both organisations are so successful.”

For its part, IHRSA has said it believes the new Brussels office will be beneficial “to the entire industry.”

Writing to Health Club Management in response to Stalker’s letter, IHRSA VP of marketing and international operations Cathy McNeil said the organisation is open to working alongside other bodies on symbiotic projects.

“We will also continue to collaborate with other organisations that serve the broader fitness industry wherever it is beneficial to the organisations involved as well as to the industry as a whole,” she wrote.

“For example, IHRSA is a financial sponsor of the 2016 European Market Research Report being compiled by Deloitte for EuropeActive.”

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
EuropeActive has broken its silence in the debate over IHRSA’s decision to expand its European presence with a new Brussels office, expressing ‘regret’ over what it calls a missed opportunity for closer collaboration between the two organisations.
HAF,FIT,IND
THUMB8263_375132.jpg

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