New boutique fitness ‘supergroup’ United Fitness Brands (UFB) announces its acquisition of Barrecore. The brand will become the third boutique studio acquired by UFB and will join founding studios, Boom Cycle and KOBOX under new ownership.
Established in 2011, Barrecore is renowned for being the UK’s original and finest barre studio, loved by a thriving community and endorsed by some of the world’s biggest celebrities and influencers including; Pippa Middleton, Claudia Schiffer, Rita Ora, Jourdan Dunn, and Poppy Delevingne.
Opening the doors to their first Studio in Chelsea, Barrecore now operates 12 studios across the UK, with a 13th site due to open in Leeds later this year. The acquisition will extend the United Fitness Brands portfolio to over 20 sites, taking the business to a national level for the first time and further cementing their mission to become Europe’s largest boutique studio chain.
Joe Cohen, CEO of United Fitness Brands, says: ‘Barrecore has established itself as a premium fitness and wellbeing brand over the past decade, and we’re very excited to now have it under the UFB umbrella. We’re delighted to have the opportunity to further improve the incredible work the team at Barrecore has done so far and we look forward to creating new synergies and best processes for all brands with our vast collective knowledge in this industry.’
Barrecore will now be owned by UFB, which is backed by Pembroke VCT, Nectar Capital Dominvs Group, and chaired by David Lloyd, Founder of David Lloyd Leisure Clubs. The UFB group is set for immediate expansion upon COVID-19 restrictions lifting, with KOBOX opening its fourth studio within one of Boom Cycle’s current locations in Waterloo, London and Barrecore opening on the first floor of KOBOX’s flagship studio on the King’s Road, Chelsea, London. Both studios are set for a Q2 2021 launch.
Andrew Wolfson, CEO of Pembroke Investment Managers LLP commented;
“We are delighted to see United Fitness Brands seizing this opportunity to grow, despite the challenges of the pandemic. We look forward to supporting Boom Cycle, KOBOX, Barrecore and future brands joining the United Fitness Brand family in their next stage of growth.”
Preet Ahluwalia, Director of Dominvs Group, said; “We’re delighted to support United Fitness Brands as they build a fiercely disruptive fitness supergroup, bringing together many of the country’s finest brands. As investors, we have always been drawn to businesses run by ambitious people with deep sector expertise and strong visions, and the team behind UFB have these traits in abundance.”
Within the UFB group, each brand will continue to be run by their expert teams under a senior management team at UFB to ensure the quality and delivery of each class is the best in the business.
“Keeping each brand operating with a separate identity and its own DNA allows for the experts in each fitness vertical to do what they do best. The support, connections, and combined central resources means each marketing investment goes further, there are greater economies of scale, and this creates an automatic forum for sharing ideas amongst the most talented fitness executives,” says Scott Rudmann, Founder and Managing Partner of Nectar Capital.
In such uncertain times, the news brings fresh optimism to the industry, with three of its most followed brands moving to expand, creating further opportunity – and employment – within the sector by scaling into new territories.
“We are very excited to have added Barrecore to the UFB family. They are a successful UK wide business with a passionate team, wonderful product experience and very scalable business model. The whole UFB team is excited to help the dedicated Barrecore team achieve the company’s potential,” says Robert Rowland.
Hilary Rowland adds, “United Fitness Brands will be on the lookout for brands to join the group that mean more than just a workout to their communities; brands that create collective effervescence and positive escapism – both of which are needed now more than ever. This is just the beginning, and we’re excited to start building from here.”