US tech group ABC Fitness Solutions is to acquire Irish gym management software company Glofox for upwards of €200 million.
Glofox was founded in 2017 by Conor O’Loughlin, a former scrumhalf with Connacht Rugby; Anthony Kelly; and Finn Hegarty. All three will continue to be leaders in the combined business.
The transaction is expected to close later this year. While the companies would not be drawn on the financial details of the deal, it is understood to be worth at least €200 million.
Latest abridged accounts for Zappy Ltd, which trades as Glofox, show it made a loss of €5 million in 2019, compared with a loss of €1.7 million a year earlier. This brought its accumulated losses to €8.6 million at the end of December 2019. Its turnover that year had doubled to €2.7 million.
Collectively, the companies said they would support more than 31 million members across more than 24,000 fitness locations following the merger.
“We are thrilled to become part of ABC, a company that has been a pioneer of the fitness industry for over 40 years,” said Mr O’Loughlin.
“To be able to align with a partner that shares the same purpose and values and that can provide additional resources to drive innovation and accelerated international growth is a tremendous advantage to our team and our customers.
“As part of ABC Fitness Solutions, Glofox has an extremely exciting future, and we look forward to taking the combined business to the next level.”
Glofox deploys an all-in-one platform to allow users manage all aspects of their fitness business, from customer acquisition to billing management, and from business intelligence to member engagement. It serves customers in more than 80 countries.
The deal follows a period of strong growth for Glofox. It doubled its workforce last year to 200 people, and announced plans in March to add a further 150 staff. It has raised more than $23 million (€22 million) in investment from backers to date. Enterprise Ireland was among its backers.
Its clients range from solo operators to large fitness franchises such as the Mark Wahlberg-backed F45, which was valued at $1.4 billion after going public last year.
Glofox changed course during the coronavirus pandemic, when most of its members had to shutter operations due to lockdown restrictions.
It rolled out a new platform early during the Covid crisis to help gyms live-stream classes and offer premium on-demand content to customers, in a move that helped many of them stay in business.
The success of the platform, allied with a resurgence in business for fitness studios and gyms as members flocked back following the lifting of restrictions, has buoyed the company.
ABC, founded in 1981, says it helps more than 20,000 clubs and facilities in 75 countries “perform better and more profitably”.
It said the addition would significantly expand its global reach and amplify its ability to serve fitness organisations of “any size, anywhere”, including personal trainers, yoga studios, boutique gyms, and commercial fitness clubs.
It said Glofox shared its values, was committed to its teams and customers and had a “proven track record” in developing software that allowed fitness operators “to thrive”.
ABC chief executive Bill Davis said: “We are so excited to welcome Glofox. Its range of solutions, focus on the boutique gym and studio sector, and impressive international reach are compelling.
“When combined with our existing strength in North and Latin America, as well as our software solutions for the personal trainer and commercial fitness club sectors, we now have a combined offering greater than the sum of its parts.”