An app that lets you join your choice of 1200 gyms, fitness studios and laser tag team all at once? It sounds like a healthy business idea -- in more ways than one.
KFit is an online product and mobile app for Apple and Android designed to help fill the empty spots in fitness classes and courses in Australia and New Zealand and offers a range of activities for time-poor, fickle or sporadic fitness types who don’t want to commit to a single gym or studio.
Launched in April this year by ex-Groupon executive Joel Neoh in eight cities in the Asia-Pacific region, it has signed up more than 1200 partners in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Auckland alone. These partners include many small fitness and leisure businesses from gyms to yoga studios, dance schools and even trampolining centres and paintball circuits.
KFit General Manager ANZ Jaye Raykos says the business model is based on the consumer desire for general wellness, but suits all approaches to fitness and workouts.
“Across Australia and NZ people are very aware of how working out is beneficial for your life and a lot of people already pay for a fitness membership and that is the core of our product,” she told The Huffington Post Australia.
“It’s what people come to KFit to look for but what we want to do is be able to make fitness be a bit more fun and be able to encourage people to try a range of amazing activities that we’ve got that are just as good for you, will help you work out and where you can have fun at the same time.”
Consumers can either sign up for a basic membership, which gives them one free class per month, or the All Access for $69 which they can use unlimited times at any number of vendors in their city -- although some may have limits on how many monthly visits they offer.
The new KFit Now option allows users to book a class an hour before it starts.
It’s free for vendors to be involved with the program and they are paid a set amount per visit from a KFit customer.
Raykos said this business idea of offering flexible activity options at a discounted rate could have worked across any number of industries -- but fitness was the most alluring in terms of fun and longevity.
“You can find excess capacity in a range of different categories and essentially this is what makes this such a fun product to keep working out,” she said.
“It’s always a lot easier to commit to a membership that allows you to have fun with it as well as being able to work up a sweat and hit your fitness goals so we find that is quite complementary to each other. It’s also about the lifetime value of our product in people’s lives.”
KFit's leadership team Emma Hoffman, Jay Raykos and Jason Ho Gulati.
Raykos estimates that the benefit to vendors is high -- they earn money for spots that may have been left unfilled and attract customers they may never have reached previously.
“We are really breaking down the barriers of entry and allowing new customers to come through the door and try something that that would never do before,” she said. “It’s complementary revenue for our vendors on their bottom line and it’s essentially lifting unused capacity so it’s definitely profit walking through the door.”
Rod Brooks, Director of Melbourne gym Vibrabody, says the KFit system has generated quality leads for new customers who have tried the facility and since returned.
“Because KFit is so easy and presents such a flexible approach to fitness, it is more likely that new clients will come to us,” he said.
“No phone call, no trial week, no induction and potential newcomers are not locked in at all.”
The growth of KFit has been quite rapid -- it has even swallowed two competitors in the last seven months. Web-based fitness class platforms Classhopper and SweatPass have been folded into the KFit brand and their founders, Emma Hoffman and Jason Ho Gulati, have joined as General Manager Marketing ANZ and Business Development Manager ANZ, respectively.
“Jason and Emma contacted me and they identified KFit as the leader in the market and our values aligned so we joined forces,” Raykos said.
KFit aims to fill the gaps in fitness classes including those at yoga studios.