Puma invests in SWEAT!

Puma Investments has completed a £3.75 million equity investment in SWEAT!, the low-cost, high-value gym operator set-up by Frank Reed, who cofounded the highly successful Virgin Active chain.  The investment includes an option for Puma to make a further equity investment of up to £2.5 million after 12 months.

The investment will support SWEAT!'s plans to roll-out its innovative fitness business to five new locations in the next 12 months, bringing its total to 10 sites since launching at the end of 2013.

The SWEAT! business model focuses on attracting gym-goers to its aspirational environment at a slight price premium to budget gyms.  Facilities in the brightly branded gym space include dedicated studios for spinning and aerobics with innovative fitness programmes, such as The Matrix, along with a full range of free weights and Technogym equipment.  The gyms are inclusive and welcoming environments manned by motivated and energetic teams in a female-friendly environment. 

SWEAT! currently attracts 600-800 visits to each of its five gyms each day with a 55% female customer base visiting gyms two-to-three times per week.

David Kaye, Chief Executive of Puma Investments, said: “We have an established track record of providing growth capital to high-quality, entrepreneurial management teams with compelling business plans. Sweat! is an exciting business with an innovative approach to its market and we are delighted to be investing in its future growth.”

Frank Reed, Chief Executive of Sweat! added: “We set-up SWEAT! because we felt that the budget gym sector lacked a fresh, fun and safe environment for women. Sweat! appeals to both men and women who want to feel more comfortable about going to the gym. We help them improve their general wellbeing and live healthier lives, contributing to a wider range of social benefits. We’re delighted to have Puma as one of our shareholders and will make its investment in us work as hard as our members do!”

Puma Investments was advised on the transaction by Charles Russell Speechlys LLP.