Belfast Telegraph

Bannatyne Group plans to create ‘hundreds of jobs’ with £50 million investment

The firm, owned by Dragon’s Den star Duncan Bannatyne, said the three-year overhaul will see it buy more businesses and upgrade existing health clubs with new spa facilities.

The Bannatyne Group has embarked on a £50 million investment drive creating “hundreds of jobs” after successfully pumping up profits.

The firm, owned by Dragon’s Den star Duncan Bannatyne, said its three-year overhaul will see it buy more businesses and upgrade existing health clubs with new spa facilities.

As part of the plan, the company will add 10,000 new items of equipment and refurbish 850,000 square feet of property across its 69 health clubs and spas.

Bannatyne, which employs 3,000 people and has 200,000 members, said the move follows “strong” trading this year, building on the £11.6 million of profit recorded at the end of 2016.

The group had planned to raise £300 million by floating on the London Stock Exchange, but pulled the plug on an initial public offering (IPO) last year.

Chief executive Justin Musgrove said: “Throughout this investment programme we will install 10,000 items of new equipment, refurbish 850,000 square feet of property and bring members the most dynamic health club experience available in the UK.

“New technology is already giving many members access to information about their fitness training, it will be extended further with some pioneering initiatives coming in the months ahead.

“Our acquisition programme is also on track to deliver new facilities to the group, helping us to offer our services to more new members around mainland UK.”

The expansion comes amid tough competition in the health and fitness market with The Gym Group looking to launch 15 to 20 sites in 2017.

Mr Musgrove added: “Trading this year has, so far, been strong, enabling us to build on the £11.6 million profit we achieved at the end of 2016.

“The strong performance gives us scope to make our investments, which we also expect to create hundreds of new jobs and grow our membership significantly.”

Weekly Business Digest Newsletter

This week's business news headlines, directly to your inbox every Tuesday.