You’ve seen them nearly everywhere – from Soul Cycle to Flywheel to Equinox and beyond. Boutique fitness outfits that might seem, at first glance, to be engaging, if not mildly costly places to get or stay in shape.
And if that’s how you see them, you’re only half right. The part you’re missing – Big fitness is also big business.
In fact, health, wellness and fitness, as the sector is called, is now estimated to be $3.4 trillion global industry. And as you’d expect, that has attracted the full range of financial players: From private equity to big banks, entrepreneurs to seasoned managers.
So while fitness has been around for decades, how did this industry experience exponential growth in just the last one? What are the trends – social, fashion, even status – behind the movement? Are they sustainable?
Jason Kelly is the person to ask. Jason is Bloomberg’s New York Bureau Chief. His first book was “The New Tycoons: Inside the Trillion Dollar Private Equity Industry That Owns Everything,” but his most recent one explores, as he puts it, “an entire economy… in apparel, gear, and entry fees” that has formed around people’s “pursuit of wellness.” His book is “Sweat Equity: Inside the New Economy of Mind and Body.”