Virgin Active acquire Holmes Place

Virgin Active is set to acquire health and fitness group Holmes Place’s UK business.


Holmes comprises of 47 clubs in the UK and has a membership of 190,000 people.

Its clubs will all be re-branded as Virgin Active by the end of the second quarter next year, provided the deal is approved by the Office of Fair Trading.

Virgin Active now have a majority stake in the business and are joined in the deal by private equity firms Bridgepoint and Permira.

The new grouping will be worth £650m, making it one of the most profitable fitness club businesses in the world.

Virgin Active will then posses operations including 165 health and fitness clubs in the UK, and will have 324,000 members, its staff levels will be in excess of 7,000 people.

Matthew Bucknall, managing director, of Virgin Active, said: “Virgin Active is a fantastic brand in the health club market representing quality, value for money and delivering great customer service.

“This acquisition will substantially enlarge Virgin Active’s operations and, in particular, strengthen its foothold in the UK market.”

Sir Richard Branson said: “Since launching in the UK in 1999, Virgin Active has revolutionised the way our members view visiting the gym.

“I am delighted to confirm today that Virgin Active has completed its purchase of Holmes Place meaning many thousands of new members will experience fitness the Virgin Active way.”

© Crimson Business Ltd 2006

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