Gympass' fitness benefits platform barrels into unicorn status with $300M raise

Founded in 2012, the startup currently has more than 2,000 clients and is active across 14 countries.
By Dave Muoio
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Gympass, a platform that offers fitness classes through an employer’s benefits program, announced today new strategic funding led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund Lain America Fund, and support by previous backers such as General Atlantic, Atomico and Valor Capital Group.

Bloomberg and others are pegging the investment at $300 million, lending the startup a $1 billion-plus valuation when taking its other assets into account.

WHAT THEY DO

Founded in Brazil but recently relocated to New York, Gympass allows employers to provide employees with monthly passes that can be redeemed for gym access and various fitness classes. Through the app, members can search for locations that support a Gympass, lookup specific class schedules and check into their session via GPS.

The startup currently has more than 2,000 clients, and offers access to nearly 47,000 gyms and studios in 14 countries, according to the announcement.

WHAT IT’S FOR

Gympass wrote in its announcement that the new funding will allow it to further personalize the user experience of its product. The startup also told Bloomberg that it will be expanding its service into the Asian region.

THE LARGER TREND

In spite of a recent meta-analysis suggesting that fitness apps may not drive significant behavior improvements, investors have remained interested in the broader fitness and wellness space.

In December, online fitness startup Freeletics raised $45 million in Series A funding, while Future’s app-based personal trainer and nutrition service raised $8.5 million a few weeks back. Peloton, a connected home exercise equipment and virtual workout class business, headlined Mobi’s yearly funding roundup with a $550 million Series E round and filed for an IPO last week.

Also in 2018, on-demand fitness coaching platform Aaptive raised $22 million and Dutch fitness platform Virtuagym closed a $7 million round. In January, ClassPass announced plans to acquire GuavaPass to fuel a push into Asia and the Middle East.

A number of fitness apps and services have also begun to bridge the gap between consumer offerings and full-fledged healthcare programs — for instance, Peerfit and Vida Health.

ON THE RECORD

"HR departments at Unilever, Tesco, and Activision Blizzard among others have taken significant strides to improve the wellbeing of their employees with Gympass. Our valued fitness partners are the foundation of our diverse, flexible, and convenient program," says Cesar Carvalho, cofounder and CEO of Gympass. "We believe this partnership will enable us to bring our solution to more organizations around the world, revolutionizing the way that employees engage in physical activity."