YouFit Files for Chapter 11, Pursues Sale to Lenders

YouFit Health Clubs LLC, Deerfield Beach, Florida, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Nov. 9, according to a bankruptcy filing in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware.

The high-volume, low-priced club chain is waiting for court approval of a sale to its lenders in a debt forgiveness plan. The purchase price was listed at $75 million.

YouFit received a Paycheck Protection Program loan of $10 million funded by Bank of America, which is listed as the company’s largest creditor, according to the filing.

The company, which was founded in 2008 by Rick Berks and has 85 locations, listed $50 million to $100 million in assets and $100 million to $500 million in liabilities, the filing showed.

YouFit spokesperson Evan Nierman told the South Florida Business Journal: "As it did for many industries, including other health clubs, the pandemic hit Youfit hard, and we have made the decision to restructure the company through a bankruptcy filing. As we enter this new phase – designed to position Youfit for future success – we remain committed to helping our members live healthy, fit lives."

YouFit was founded in 2008 by Rick Berks. Berks resigned in May, citing philosophical differences with the company’s financial partner group for his resignation. His daughter, Christy Berks-Stross also resigned in May. She had served as the company’s director of real estate development and legal counsel for real estate, corporate and general matter.

At that time, the company listed it had 100 locations.

YouFit is the latest club company to file for bankruptcy. Other companies that filed for Chapter 11 include Gold’s Gym, 24 Hour Fitness, Town Sports International (which operates New York Sports Clubs among others), YogaWorks and Cyc Fitness. Flywheel filed for Chapter 7 and closed all of its studios.

IHRSA, the trade association for commercial clubs, recently noted that 15 percent of health clubs and studios had closed permanently through the third quarter and that one in four health clubs could close by the end of 2020 due to COVID-19 related club closures and restrictions.