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Luxury Fitness & Lifestyle Brand Leaders Unite - SoulCycle to Enter Strategic Partnership With Equinox to Accelerate Brand's Growth

Wednesday, May 25, 2011 General News J E 4
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NEW YORK, May 25, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, SoulCycle and Equinox, brand leaders in the fitness and healthy lifestyle categories, have announced that Equinox will join in a strategic partnership with SoulCycle to accelerate the growth of the brand and further establish SoulCycle as the premier independent indoor cycling and lifestyle company.

Equinox and SoulCycle, each a best in class operator, have aligned in order to leverage the strength and knowledge of both brands more effectively and efficiently. The Equinox partnership with SoulCycle is expected to fuel the company's rapid domestic expansion with a focus on continued growth in the New York, Los Angeles, and selected other major metropolitan areas. SoulCycle will continue to operate as an independent company, with co-founders Elizabeth Cutler and Julie Rice leading its operations and continue to build freestanding boutique fitness locations. The company will retain its pay-by-class enrollment model and maintain its focus on providing its rider community with an unparalleled group fitness experience underpinned by the industry's most inspiring instructors and a focus on customer service.

"In 15 years in the industry, I haven't seen a boutique trend with real staying power like SoulCycle," says Harvey Spevak, CEO of Equinox. "We are excited by the long term potential in the SoulCycle business model and we think their innovative boutique cycling experience is complementary to Equinox. We evaluated several other studio cycling operators as investment or acquisition targets however, we believe the SoulCycle vision, brand and team are far superior.  We look forward to partnering with Julie Rice and Elizabeth Cutler to scale this concept quickly and to establish a national footprint, much as we've done with Equinox over the past 19 years."  

SoulCycle is expected to expand from its current eight locations to an upwards of 40 locations over the next five years with additional studios in New York, multiple locations in Los Angeles, London and beyond.

Equinox and SoulCycle share similar visions. Both companies are known for their commitment to lifestyle, service, innovation and design, and have a passionate following amongst dedicated upscale consumers. The companies' respective customers have similar demographic and psychographic profiles and both foster fiercely loyal clientele who are passionate about their brands.

"While Equinox and SoulCycle have and will continue to have different economic models, we share the same philosophy - providing a premier customer experience and promoting a healthy lifestyle. We've long admired what Harvey and his team are doing at Equinox and look forward to working with them as we grow SoulCycle's footprint," said SoulCycle Founder Elizabeth Cutler.

"We've spent years developing the unique SoulCycle method and training an amazing team of inspirational fitness instructors," said SoulCycle Founder Julie Rice. "We are confident that combining the SoulCycle brand with Equinox's resources will provide us with the opportunity to bring SoulCycle's innovative programming faster to a larger number of people around the country," she continued.

The SoulCycle Experience

In 2006, SoulCycle introduced the innovative model of boutique cardio fitness to the marketplace and reinvented indoor studio cycling. Since 2006, riders have been flocking to SoulCycle to release stress, burn fat, tone muscle, improve aerobic endurance and change their bodies, fast.  SoulCycle combines a mental component of inspirational coaching, with great music and a full-body workout on the bike. Not only do Riders burn calories, get an intense 45-minute cardio workout, but using the SoulCycleŽ Method, they simultaneously tone their upper bodies using hand weights and do core exercises. 

The SoulCycle experience is a high energy, results-oriented, community based workout.  Each rider feels important and connected to the brand as a result of the well-trained staff and personal customer attention. The exercise program focuses on the "energy of the pack" and creates a strong community bond between the riders. The rhythm-based rides hosted in candlelit studios make riders feel like they are partying in a healthy nightclub.  And the one-of-a-kind playlists set the tone for an exciting new experience every ride. 

Co-founded by Elizabeth Cutler and Julie Rice, SoulCycle opened its first location in the heart of New York City's Upper West Side in April 2006 and has taken NYC, the Hamptons and Westchester and Miami by storm. Since launch, SoulCycle has opened seven studios (four in Manhattan, and one in Scarsdale, the Hamptons, and Miami) and established itself as the leading branded studio cycling operator.  SoulCycle's studios attract everyone from editors, celebrities, young professionals, captains of industry and socialites to outdoor cyclists and fitness enthusiasts.

About Equinox

Equinox Fitness Clubs operates 51 upscale, full-service facilities in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Boston, Dallas and DC. The company offers an integrated selection of Equinox-branded programs, services and products, including strength and cardio training, group fitness classes, personal training, spa services and products, apparel and food/juice bars. Since its inception in 1991, Equinox has developed a lifestyle brand that represents service, value, quality, expertise, innovation, attention to detail, market leadership and results. In addition to the Equinox clubs, the Company operates under the Pure Yoga and Blink brands.  The Pure Yoga brand operates two upscale, full-service yoga facilities with over 100 classes a week led by world-renowned instructors, private yoga instruction and a series of workshops and community events.  The Company's newest brand, Blink, was launched in early 2011 and operates gyms with a simplified approach to fitness, by offering strength and cardio equipment in a friendly, clean and motivating environment at a low membership price point.   

SOURCE Equinox Fitness

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