The Franchise King®

Curves For Women Franchise Opportunity


Franchise Review

(This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy).

Curves is “The World’s Largest Fitness Center Franchise.”

(According to The Guinness Book Of World Records.)

That’s quite an accomplishment.

Curves For Women was The One. The one that set the stage for almost every circuit-training style fitness franchise that’s currently being offered in the US-and around the world.

From their franchise website:

Gary and Diane Heavin opened the first Curves in 1992 as a fitness and weight-loss facility designed especially for women. In a relatively short amount of time, Curves grew to become the largest fitness franchise in the world, helping women in over 90 countries lead healthier lives. The reason for Curves’ success is the practical approach to women’s diet and exercise combined with a supportive club environment. We invite women of all shapes, sizes, and ages to lose weight, become stronger, and reach their health goals at Curves.”

It’s all good.

But, is it good enough for you to buy?

Well, it was good enough for North Castle Partners to add to their portfolio.

Curves Closings

Maybe it’s not all good.

From the Wall Street Journal:

“Over the past three years its U.S. franchisees have been closing outlets at a rapid rate, shrinking the chain by about a third: to 5,208 U.S. sites at the end of last year from 7,748 at the beginning of 2007, according to a recent franchise disclosure document the company filed with state regulators. More than 1,000 Curves vanished across the country in 2009, while just 35 new locations opened.”


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My Take

Fitness franchises that are focused on women still have legs. (Nothing even remotely sexual intended.)

But, if franchisors in this sector-like Curves For Women, don’t adapt to the changing needs of the market, they will quickly find themselves in one heck of a bind.

Pros: Curves For Women is a powerful brand. Heavin has done a remarkable job with the branding aspect of the business. Most people instantly know what Curves is-and what Curves does. The only way for you to make the purchase of a Curves franchise payoff is to take multi-unit risk. Choose a great geographic area, and buy the rights to 5 Curves franchises. That way, you have a chance to make some money-if things go your way.

Another good thing about Curves; the low investment. You can start a Curves franchise for well under $100,000. Well. Under.

Cons: If Curves For Women wasn’t having some issues, they probably wouldn’t have been purchased by a private equity group.

Numerous franchisee complaints have turned into lawsuits-that’s never good.

Some markets may not have territory availability.

The bottom line: If you’re looking to get into the fitness franchise segment-one that’s 100% focused on women, Curves is still in the game. Choose your locations carefully, and talk to at least 20 current franchisees from different area of the country.

In other words, do great franchise research.


curves for women review Out of 6


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joel libava

I'm The Franchise King®, Joel Libava. I help prospective franchise owners avoid bank account emptying mistakes.
For 23 years, I’ve been showing people how to make smart, informed decisions on franchises to buy, and I can help you, too!
P.S. I'm not a franchise consultant/broker.

Joel is Highly Principled
There are many people in the franchise business who claim to to be experts in the field. Unfortunately many of them lack both knowledge and integrity. Joel, however, is without question one of the most qualified and principled people I know, in or out of his industry."
- Greg Reynolds, Retired Outplacement Counselor
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