UBX Adds 24/7 Studio Access

Business Wire

New tech is breaking down barriers for boutique studios.

The latest: Aussie-born boxing fitness franchise UBX unveiled Extended Access, granting members 24/7 facility usage.

Designed to deliver the same workout with more flexibility, members use a key fob to unlock the studio and turn on lights, screens and music. The interactive screens guide the class, syncing up with Myzone heart rate trackers. Upon leaving, everything shuts down once again.

Convenience economy. According to UBX co-founder Tim West, the scheme reduces the burden on franchisees while aligning with busy lifestyles:

“Due to high staff costs, most boutique gyms open for a morning and afternoon shift during the week and a Saturday morning shift on the weekend, meaning they’re actually shut more than they’re open.”

UBX says 50% of its sites will be upgraded by the end of the year. And each new buildout will feature the tech, bolstering its goal of reaching 500 studios in the next five years.

Getting It Done

For boutiques, community has always been the greatest draw, while cost and limited availability  their biggest weaknesses. But even amid financial stress, 62% of consumers cut back elsewhere before sacrificing their gym membership.

Trade-offs. However, with time a top priority, global operators are showing their flexibility.

Fellow boxing concept 9ROUND just launched a tech-enabled 24/7 franchise model after its pilot resulted in a 15% boost in same-store memberships.

Adding hours and amenities, TRIB3 is exploring boutique-in-a-box installations. Stripping back to the basics, pay-per-use microgyms out of Singapore are scaling across the world.

More to come. For global franchisors, same-store revenue is critical when new openings inevitably slow – making an off-hours self-serve model appealing.

Interestingly, one-to-many, screen-based training was the crux of the legal battle between F45 and BFT, and the former is rumoured to be testing an instructor-less setup as part of its turnaround.

Takeaway: From Anytime Fitness to CrossFit “open gyms”, expanding access isn’t a new idea. Now, boutiques hope to increase utilisation without running up overhead. But, solo classes run counter to the instructor-led, social experience they were built on. Hoping to strike the right balance, UBX and others will sub in convenience when community’s not on the cards.

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