GoodLife Fitness is exploring the possibility of using some of Target Canada’s soon-to-be-vacated 133 locations for its nationwide expansion.
“The former Target locations provide spacious and convenient locations that would be an excellent space for people to achieve their fitness goals,” says GoodLife Fitness Founder and CEO David Patchell-Evans in a statement.
It will also be offering prioritized job interviews with former Target employees “to determine if there is a fit to join the GoodLife Family. ”
The company, based in London, Ontario, is looking to grow to 350 fitness clubs and gyms across Canada this spring, with a total of 400 locations by the end of 2015. It already has 300 locations, mainly in Eastern and Central Canada, and aims to have 1,000 clubs across the country for its ultimate growth.
It is not known whether GoodLife only has intentions to occupy a portion of the Target Canada stores, which range between 100,000 square feet to 135,000 square feet in size. In contrast, GoodLife Fitness clubs are between 25,000 square feet to 60,000 square feet.
If acquisitions are successful, this would not be the first time the gym chain has acquired large retail stores for its expansion plans: in 1999, when the company was much smaller, GoodLife Fitness acquired 12 former Eaton’s stores in Ontario.
Many of Target Canada’s stores are located in centralized areas of shopping centres and serve as an anchor to attract shoppers. The recently announced sudden vacancy will leave a large void, but there has been speculation that retailers such as Loblaws, Canadian Tire, Costco, Lowe’s, Rona or Sobeys will scramble to fill strategic locations.
“We want our real estate and shopping centre partners to be healthy and successful too, so this would be a positive solution for all,” Patchell-Evans adds.
Feature Image: Fitness gym via Shutterstock