Q1 2020

16 LATIN AMERICA NEWS / Q1 2020 , Rapid Expansion Smart Fit opens its first gym in El Salvador. Focused on Latin America, the network continues its rapid expansion and enters its 12th country. Smart Fit, the largest network of gyms in Latin America, has inaugurated its first gym in the city of San Salvador, the capital of El Salvador. The expansion is part of the company’s plan to increase its international presence and to tap the market potential in the Caribbean country. “Opening up our new gym underlines Smart Fit’s strategy to continue growing in regions that are not being served, offering a top-rate gym at a price that is affordable for all Salvadorans,” said Edgard Corona, founder and president of Smart Fit. With El Salvador, Smart Fit is now in 12 countries. They are; Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and the Dominican Republic. The expectation is to maintain the pace of new gym openings, and to continue investing in Latin American countries that are ripe for investment. Expansion numbers Smart Fit recently hit 2.8 million gym-goers at all of its locations. In 2020, the company estimates there will be 1.3 million new members in Brazil alone – which is approximately 2.5 registrations per minute. This year will also see a gym opening every 36 hours, for a total of 238 new gyms in Latin America. According to André Pezeta, vice president of Smart Fit’s Latin America division, the brand has ambitious expansion plans. “We continue to fulfill our plan to provide high-level fitness facilities to everyone, and our objective is to go anywhere in the world where this is possible, whether that is in Latin America or in Europe,” he said. By the end of this year, the brand would like to have 1035 gyms on the continent. “Our low-cost model is self-sustaining and can go anywhere,” the executive concluded. In December 2019 alone, the expansion hit the historic mark of a gym opened every 16 hours. Health within everyone’s reach The gym network allows everyone access to top- notch fitness facilities, with the best infrastructure at an accessible price. Today, lack of physical activity affects 47% of Brazil’s population, which has motivated the brand’s founder to invest even more in one of the largest gym networks worldwide. “Our main mission is to fight the growing index of sedentarism. To do this, we will keep expanding,” Edgard said. According to the most recent report from IHRSA released in 2019 – the leading association that analyzes performance indicators for 65 markets worldwide – Smart Fit is the third-largest gym network worldwide, in terms of number of own gyms.