Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Employees, Members Buy Mountain's Edge Fitness Center

“A group of employees and members of Mountain's Edge Fitness Center have pooled their resources to buy the south Boulder club. Long-time employee Shannon Derby and about a dozen other people purchased the 10-year-old club from founder Donald Scott Carew, who earlier this year was indicted along with an Erie man on charges they conducted a Ponzi scheme through an electronics company called Genius Inc. The fitness center was not implicated as being part of the alleged $10 million-plus scheme, according to the state's indictment. The purchase -- the terms of which were not disclosed -- is not expected to affect terms of the 900 members' contracts, their classes or the staff members with whom they interact, Derby said. ‘I believe that the structure of the new business model is really incredibly representative of what we have here,’ she said. ‘And what we have here, is a community...’ ‘We're really not a club for people to join; we're a place where people want to belong.’ Mountain's Edge Fitness Center has performed well during the recession, she said. During August, 42 percent of the 56 clubs surveyed by the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association reported their revenue from fees and member dues were down by more than 5 percent from August 2008. However, 52 percent of the survey respondents indicated their non-dues revenue was either steady or increased in August 2009 from August 2008, officials for the nonprofit trade association said. Association officials also expressed optimism about the future, noting 80 percent of the respondents reported comparable or increased visits. ‘Like all industries, we've seen our ups and downs in the economy, but we've remained steady,’ said Kara M. Thompson, a spokeswoman for the association.”


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