How I grew my multi-unit gym business with no fitness industry experience

If you're keen to start and grow a business in a sector where you have little-to-no experience, a franchise can be the ideal opportunity.

How I grew my multi-unit gym business with no fitness industry experience

Tapping into the years of experience of your franchisor, the support team and fellow franchisees can set you on the path to success – just like Snap Fitness franchisee Peter Dhillon.

“I’ve always had an eye for business. After leaving college, my first job was at my uncle’s transportation business where I learned the ins and outs of the industry. Working with my uncle inspired me to eventually start my own transport company, which quickly grew from one van to 30 lorries within five years,” said Peter. “While the financial success of this business was incredible, I worked 15-16 hours a day with no work-life balance, which isn’t okay when you have a family at home. I needed a change, which is when I started looking into franchises.

“In 2016, I decided to pursue a new venture away from the transport industry and purchased a dessert franchise. It was a whole new experience but, despite the challenges, I realised that anything was possible when you got the right employees in place and stuck to the franchisor’s processes. This business is now performing very well, and I still own it to this day. However, I wanted to expand my portfolio. I’ve always been passionate about fitness, so when I got the chance to open a gym franchise, I jumped at the opportunity.”

After extensively researching the industry and gym franchises in the UK, Peter decided Snap Fitness was the one for him. In his initial meeting, the team explained how they could support him in finding a location, marketing his gym to new members and train his staff. Because he already understood the importance of a good support network in franchising, he could see that this brand was a great option. 

“Since opening my first Snap Fitness territory, I’ve been hugely impressed with the number of members coming through the door. It’s not uncommon to have well over 150 members on site during peak hours. This is because we have an emphasis on providing the best equipment and offering a welcoming staffed environment, unlike other gyms that settle for lower-spec options and are happy to leave their gyms unmanned.” 

After opening his first Snap Fitness in Neats Court, Isle of Sheppey, in 2019, Peter has quickly gone on to become a multi-unit owner, opening another four territories across Dover, Ashford, Warminster and Waterford, with a further three territories secured in Ireland. His most recent gym in Waterford, Ireland – opened 16 months ago – has since become the network’s fastest-growing club, reaching over 2,000 members in just 12 months. 

“The head office team provide both my staff and me with ongoing training and are happy to answer questions whenever I need guidance. Over the last few years, I’ve found that to be successful as a gym owner, having a great team of club managers and support from head office in finding the right locations and offering additional marketing materials is a must. At head office, they also provide a team of dedicated marketing professionals who create outstanding video and social media content for us to use, as well as keep the website looking professional and attractive to potential new members.

“Looking to the future, I’m excited to continue growing my Snap Fitness portfolio. I have a further three territories secured across Ireland in Drogheda, Kilkenny and Swords and am currently in the process of securing the best possible locations for the new sites.

“My advice for anyone considering joining the Snap Fitness network would be to go for it. It worked for me. Despite having no prior knowledge of the industry, the level of support I received was beyond what I could have imagined, from marketing all the way to property management. And with the network continuing to grow and outperform other gym franchises in the UK, now is the perfect time to join this fantastic community.”

If you’re ready to join one of the fastest-growing industries in the world, why not get in touch now and take the first step on your new path to changing lives?

Peter Dhillon
Peter Dhillon