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The Gym founder John Treharne steps down after a decade

John Treharne, founder of low-cost fitness pioneer The Gym, will step down as its boss in September after a decade in charge.
The former England squash player, who grew the business from a single site in Hounslow to 133 gyms, will remain on the board as a director but chief financial officer Richard Darwin will step up to run the business.
Mr Darwin joined the company prior to its 2015 initial public offering, which saw it valued at ?250m based on its 195p a share listing price.
Mr Treharne was reported to have made ?3.3m at the time of the stock market flotation after offloading 1.7m shares. He still owns 3.5pc of the shares.
The company is now valued at ?334m after a 28pc rise in the stock to 250p, which fell nearly 4pc on the back of the news of Mr Treharne’s move onto the board.
The Gym Group
In 2017, the company opened 21 sites, a record for one year. This meant it was responsible for almost two thirds of the growth of the low-cost gym sector since March last year.
This organic growth, alongside its purchase of Lifestyle Fitness, helped its total membership numbers to jump 36pc to 607,000 last year, across its 128 sites.
The low-cost business model in the gym sector has ballooned in recent years as customers became attracted by the lack of unnecessary charges such as joining fees and long contracts.
The Gym and its rivals such as Pure Gym allow members to join for low monthly fees and cancel their membership whenever they want. They also enable gym-goers to work out any time of day via secure entrances activated with membership cards, which has proven extremely popular with shift workers.
The Gym founder John Treharne steps down after a decade

Work and Pensions Committee chairman Frank Field questioned whether personal trainers at The Gym were truly self-employed but the company said there were no issues with its treatment of such workers

Credit:
Julian Simmonds
Both The Gym and Pure Gym recently faced the ire of work and pensions committee chairman Frank Field MP who questioned whether personal trainers at both companies were truly self-employed.
The companies said their agreements with their personal trainers were legally sound with Mr Treharne stating The Gym had been developing a system of offering personal trainers part-time work alongside their self-employed commitments. This has since been trialled in six sites and is expected to be rolled out over the summer months.
The Gym’s chairman Penny Hughes said Mr Treharne’s “extraordinary achievement” meant The Gym had transformed from a “start-up into a market leader”. She added Mr Darwin had “unrivalled experience and knowledge” of the business.
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