SpaFinder Acquires SpaWish Gift Certificate and Gift Card Business

SpaFinder to Re-Name New Division 'Spa & Salon Wish' Opening Door to $40 Billion U.S. Salon Industry

SpaFinder, Inc., the largest spa marketing, media and gifting company, has continued its business expansion by acquiring the gift certificate and gift card business of SpaWish, a leading spa gift company. Effective immediately, SpaFinder will re-name, brand and operate this new division as 'Spa & Salon Wish' ( and begin to expand the network of thousands of day spas and salons that currently accept SpaWish gift cards and certificates.

Through the acquisition, SpaFinder will add the vast U.S. salon industry—a significant new market opportunity—to its spa gift program, while further expanding its reach into traditional spa retail channels. According to recent industry research, the salon services industry (consisting of hair, face and nail service establishments) is an estimated $40 billion market, and there are approximately 400,000 beauty, skin and nail salons across the U.S.

'Spa & Salon Wish will provide a new dimension to our business with a huge upside for spas, salons and consumers,' said SpaFinder, Inc. Chairman & CEO Pete Ellis. 'It opens the door to us bringing thousands and thousands of salons into our gifting network while providing us with an opportunity to reach a much broader audience eager to enjoy spa and salon experiences.'

Ellis added that SpaFinder has seen a need for a complementary gift certificate and gift card that reaches an expanded demographic. While SpaFinder will continue to offer premium gift certificates and cards under the 'SpaFinder' name, primarily for use at top tier spas around the world, the Spa & Salon Wish division will increase retail channels and serve a more mainstream audience seeking beauty services and products.

Given SpaFinder's existing industry-leading spa distribution network and the number of salons nationwide, SpaFinder projects that Spa & Salon Wish gift certificates and cards will likely be accepted at 4,000 locations by the end of 2008. (SpaFinder gift certificates and cards are already accepted at more than 4,000 spas.) The company also anticipates a dramatic expansion of SpaFinder's network of gift card distribution points. SpaFinder Gift Cards are currently sold at more than 30,000 retail outlets across the U.S. and will be complemented by a Spa & Salon Wish card presence at largely non-overlapping retailers with demographics in line with the Spa & Salon Wish product.
The launch of Spa & Salon Wish will also open up opportunities for SpaFinder to market its new SpaBooker online booking program, which has seen rapid market acceptance and sales since its launch in October. SpaBooker, which allows participating spas to support live appointment booking on and affiliate sites, will be made available to salons across the U.S. to help them increase their bookings and business.

According to Ellis, the acquisition of SpaWish's gift certificate and gift card business dramatically continues SpaFinder's expansion into the salon market, building on its recent purchase of a significant interest in SpaBoom, an online marketing services company that helps day spas and salons sell Instant Gift Certificates through their own websites.

Learn More
To learn more or speak with Pete Ellis about SpaFinder's acquisition of SpaWish and forward-looking plans, contact Betsy Isroelit at 213.300.0108, [email protected]

About Spa and Salon Wish
Spa & Salon Wish, the new gifting division of SpaFinder, Inc., is dedicated to providing consumers with spa gift certificates and gift cards that can be used at thousands of beauty, nail and hair salons and an ever-increasing number of day spas across the U.S. The division complements SpaFinder's industry-leading spa gift certificate and gift card programs by reaching a broad audience of consumers seeking beauty services and products, adding thousands of additional spas and salons to SpaFinder's spa marketing program and thousands of retailers to its distribution network.

About SpaFinder, Inc.
The world's largest spa marketing, media and gifting company, SpaFinder, Inc. reaches millions of wellness-focused consumers via its global media network, including the award-winning, Luxury SpaFinder magazine and the annual Worldwide Guide to Spas. SpaFinder Europe and SpaFinder Japan offer regional spa marketing programs, including localized, native-language websites showcasing day spas, salon spas, and onsens. Redeemable at 4,000+ spas worldwide and available at thousands of retail outlets across North America and the United Kingdom, SpaFinder Gift Certificates and Gift Cards represent the world's largest spa gifting program. Through its partnership with SpaBoom, the company also provides an array of technology and online marketing services for spas. Founded in 1986, the privately held company is headquartered in Manhattan.