CycleBar Opening in Former Flywheel Locations for Its Debut in New York City

Later this month, a CycleBar studio will open in New York City, the first of six CycleBar studios planned to open this summer in former Flywheel locations, according to an announcement from Xponential Fitness, which owns the CycleBar indoor cycling franchise. The first location will be in Noho with other locations planned for Flatiron, Upper East Side, NoMad, Tribeca and Williamsburg. A new CycleBar studio will also open in Philadelphia.

The expansion comes three months after group fitness studios were allowed to reopen in New York City (health clubs were allowed to reopen in September 2020) after being closed since March 2020 due to COVID-19. Flywheel was a victim of the mandated temporary closures, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in September 2020 and closing all of its studios.

Xponential, on the other hand, continued to expand despite the pandemic. The expansion in New York is partly due to its relationship with Palladin Consumer Retail Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm, and their establishment of PB Metro in 2019 that is rebranding the six former Flywheel Sports studios. Additional territory development is also planned in the market.

“After years of being a staple in the boutique cycling industry, we are excited CycleBar has reached the Big Apple with the help of Palladin,” Anthony Geisler, CEO of Xponential Fitness, said in the announcement. “With a devoted population of riders in NYC and a pent-up demand for local neighborhood boutique fitness, the time could not be better for us to debut our high-energy, rhythm-based workout to such a fitness-focused market in the United States.”

The expansion of CycleBar, which was founded in 2004, into the New York market follows the 2019 expansion of Pure Barre, also owned by Xponential, into New York City where it now has 16 open locations owned by PB Metro with an additional 12 licenses to be developed over the next three years.

In addition to converting the six Flywheel locations to CycleBar studios in New York City, the partnership with PB Metro gives the group the right to develop 23 more CycleBar studios in the New York metro market over the next five years. Two of these locations will introduce dual concepts, with both a CycleBar studio and a Pure Barre studio in the same building.

“We are excited to grow our partnership with Xponential as we begin to grow the CycleBar brand and continue to expand the Pure Barre brand in New York and other regions,” said Rob Fioretti, managing director of Palladin, which has the exclusive rights to develop both concepts in its territory.

Snapdragon Capital Partners is a private equity investment firm that backs Xponential Fitness and its brands.

“We are thrilled to watch Xponential’s continued expansion,” said Mark Grabowski, managing partner at Snapdragon Capital Partners. “The transaction will establish CycleBar’s footprint in one of the most important markets for boutique fitness, and we are excited for CycleBar to enter the New York market."

CycleBar was ranked on Entrepreneur Magazine’s Franchise 500 and Fastest-Growing Franchises lists in 2021 as well as Inc. Magazine’s Inc. 5000 in 2020.

Other brands owned by Xponential Fitness are Club Pilates, StretchLab, Row House, AKT, YogaSix, STRIDE and Rumble, a boxing-inspired full-body workout that it purchased in March.