As years go by, the gym sector gains more and more importance in the Brazilian market. Everyday, big companies try to increase their share of the market. This article presents the biggest gym chains in Brazil.
The Brazilian gym industry is a rising sector of the economy considering Brazil is second behind the United States among countries with the highest number of gyms. In 2000, there were only 797 gyms in the country; by the end of 2012, there were over 22 thousand gyms, and 6.7 million people registered in them, summing up a billing of USD 2.3 billion. This increase represents a positive difference of 130% compared to 2011, when there were almost 17,000 gyms in Brazil.
According to the Associação Brasileira de Academias, the Brazilian association responsible for the gym sector, known as ACAD, 95% of the gym market is in the hands of medium and small companies. For the big companies of the sector, what is left is 0.7% of the total amount of establishments, 4.2% of the number of members and 11.7% of the total sector's income. The consolidation of the sector started only 5 years ago, and the companies are still professionalizing themselves.
The Brazilian chain is in the list of the 25 largest gym chains in the world compiled by IHRSA, the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association, which represents the global fitness sector, encompassing 9,000 clients in 76 countries. In 2012, BioRitmo/SmartFit was in the 17th position in terms of revenue, with a 2012 revenue of USD 110 million, and the 18th in terms of members - counting with 230,000 people.
Founded in 1996, BioRitmo launched the SmartFit business in 2009, offering more accessible prices to the population, and increasing its share in the Brazilian market of gym chains. There are 25 units of the chain in the cities of Belém, Limeira (SP), Piracicaba (SP), Santo André (SP) and São Paulo.
The Bodytech Group has been in the Brazilian market since 2006, and currently has 54 gyms, 40 of them being under the branch Bodytech and 14 under the branch Fórmula. The group also manages gyms in two sports and social clubs in São Paulo city. Founded in 2005, Bodytech now has 87,000 members with branches in the cities of Belém, Brasília, Belo Horizonte, Campinas (SP), Curitiba, Goiânia, Natal, Porto Alegre, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, São Paulo and Vila Velha (ES).
Companhia Athletica/Cia Athletica
Cia Athletica has 18 units in the cities of Belém, Belo Horizonte, Brasília, Campinas, Curitiba, Manaus, Porto Alegre, Recife, Ribeirão Preto, Rio de Janeiro, São José dos Campos and São Paulo. It has been present in the Brazilian market for almost 30 years and has 35,000 members throughout Brazil.
Founded in 1983, Runner has 21 gyms and 25,000 members. It’s mostly concentrated in São Paulo: they have more than half of their gyms spread throughout the city. They also have branches in the Federal District, in Belo Horizonte and in other cities in the state of São Paulo, like Itatiba, Jacareí, São Caetano, São José dos Campos, Sorocaba and Valinhos.
There are two large gym chains in Brazil which differ a bit from the traditional gym style: Contours and Curves. Both of them were founded in the United States and can be be found in most Brazilian states, being that they are the two main gyms exclusively for women in the country.