Private equity firm VMG Partners acquired a minority stake in Solidcore, a provider of pilates-based resistance training, betting that consumers will return to boutique fitness classes once the worst of the pandemic is in the rear-view mirror. “We are big believers in brands that can create an emotional connection with consumers and become a recurring part of their routine,” McConnell Smith, a VMG partner, said in an interview. “So we’d been tracking Solidcore well before Covid-19 disrupted the fitness category.”

The company, which has around 70 locations in states including New York, North Dakota and Virginia, will use new funding to open studios in the U.S. and abroad, first targeting locations such as London and Canada, Solidcore founder and Chief Executive Officer Anne Mahlum said in an interview. She also sees the West Coast as a candidate for expansion. Mahlum said the pandemic changed her ambition to reach 100 studios by 2020, to 2022.

Solidcore in November signed a partnership with Equinox’s digital media platform Variis. Still, Mahlum expects that once the vaccine rollout is further along, the at-home offerings will be a supplement, not a substitute, to in-studio classes. The workouts use a machine dubbed the “sweatlana,” which has similar features to a pilates reformer.


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Source: BNN Bloomberg

By Gillian Tan