COVID-19 has put the brakes on many businesses, but one Moreton Bay franchisee is instead looking to expand his operations.
World Gym Burpengary is the largest franchise in Australia, with a whopping 4,300 members and a floor space of more than 3,000 sqm to workout.
Like many other gyms in Queensland, owner Justin Bellas was forced to close his doors on March 23 following Federal and State Government social distancing restrictions.
But instead of giving up, Justin decided to capitalise on his assets to pivot the business in a totally different direction.
“By noon the next day, I lost 98% of my income when all direct debits for the gym were suspended indefinitely,” he recalls. “I had to make the tough decision to stand down 70% of my loyal employees. We needed to stay positive and keep the staff that I did have employed.
“In order to keep the business moving, we made the decision to keep operating the World Gym Barbell Café and focus on a new meal subscription service – Raw Power Meals. The new meal business has been a huge success with new customers joining each week. We have had to invest extra money into the business to increase the capacity of the kitchen to keep up with demand.”
A Raw Power Meals subscription gets you seven nutritional home-delivered meals per week for $54. Macros are calculated for each meal to cater for certain categories such as weight loss, muscle mass gain, vegan, vegetarian, children meals and more.
After a few weeks of operation, Justin’s full-time chef is now pumping out 300 meals per week and he’s expanding the commercial kitchen to cater for more.
Not only has the Raw Power Meals aspect of the business expanded, but Justin has worked with World Gym Australia CEO Jon Davie to deliver free training classes.
“I’m able to keep that point of contact with our members that is so important by delivering fresh home cooked meals straight to their doors,” Justin says.
“Some of my fitness instructors are recording or posting Facebook live videos to keep our members engaged with regular exercise such as pilates, yoga or high-intensity training sessions. Members can see the timetable online and do the workout in their own home. They can then order fresh food and have it delivered to their door.
“It’s funny how things work out. You’ve just got to think outside the box and really look at it positively and adapt as much as possible to the crisis.
“It’s our members and the community which keep us going – we sincerely thank them for their support.”
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