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Bally Total Fitness (NYSE: BFT), the nation’s leader in health and fitness, today announced the opening of a new franchise facility in Seoul, Korea. The new fitness center is the company’s third franchise in the area and plans for a fourth facility to open this spring are already underway. The new fitness club will help meet Korea’s growing need for health and fitness options and will provide residents with another full service fitness center to meet their needs.
According to Paul Toback, chairman and CEO of Bally Total Fitness, the company has renewed its focus on franchising. “Franchising is a key initiative for Bally Total Fitness and an important part of our turnaround plan as it allows us to build our brand and increase revenue without investing capital.”
In the last decade, the percentage of overweight South Koreans has jumped from 22 percent to 36 percent, increasing the demand for fitness centers like Bally Total Fitness. The South Korean government is focusing heavily on ways to fight this epidemic and is considering taking measures such as placing labels on foods that are deemed unhealthy and cutting fast food commercials from daytime television in order to fight obesity.
“We recognize the need for state-of-the-art, yet affordable fitness centers in Seoul and are excited to offer residents another Bally Total Fitness location. We are expanding in the South Korean market at an appropriate time given the government’s focus on health and fitness and are committed to helping residents get fit and will continue to look for additional growth opportunities,” said Robert Moschorak, managing director of franchise operations for Bally Total Fitness.
The new facility, located in an affluent residential area of Seoul, features a wide variety of cardio and resistance training equipment, as well as a free weight area. Group exercise classes are also offered, with the most popular being Yoga, BosuÂ® and KwandoÂ®. The club also has a staff of 20 personal trainers who are available to help members set goals and get started on a workout program. Other club amenities include eight indoor golf lanes as well as a sauna, nail salon, juice bar and sport massage therapy clinic, all within the facility.
The club is located at 12, Banpo-2dong, Seochu-gu, Seoul, 137-042 Korea.
About Bally Total Fitness
Bally Total Fitness is the largest and only nationwide commercial operator of fitness centers, with 440 facilities located in 29 states, Mexico, Canada, Korea, China and the Caribbean under the Bally Total FitnessÂ®, Crunch Fitness(SM), Gorilla Sports(SM), Pinnacle FitnessÂ®, Bally Sports ClubsÂ® and Sports Clubs of CanadaÂ® brands. Bally offers a unique platform for distribution of a wide range of products and services targeted to active, fitness-conscious adult consumers.