Is Planet Fitness ‘Destroyed’? Its Founder And Former CEO Seems To Think So.

The company has been the target of a widespread boycott in recent weeks. Is Planet Fitness ‘Destroyed’? Its Founder And Former CEO Seems To Think So. Shutterstock

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We’ve witnessed a number of widespread boycotts in recent years primarily rooted in social or political disagreement. Most recently, that backlash played out against one of the world’s biggest gym chains.

How it all started

A number of Planet Fitness members, primarily women, have spoken out against a corporate policy allowing individuals to use the locker rooms that align with their gender identity. According to reports, some men have taken advantage of this policy, allegedly resulting in the harassment and even abuse of women and girls.

Planet Fitness has come under fire specifically due to the claims of some critics that it has punished women who complain about feeling uncomfortable while taking no action against those against whom the accusations were made.

After weeks of boycotts and calls for existing members to cancel their contracts, Planet Fitness has reportedly lost hundreds of millions of dollars in value. For founder and former CEO Mike Grondahl, the writing is on the wall: Planet Fitness is all but doomed.

Here’s what he said

During a recent interview, Grondahl said the company “was like another child” and that it pains him to see what it has become.

“It’s been pretty much destroyed in, you know, it’s lost all respect within the country within the last couple weeks.”

After Grondahl sold Planet Fitness in 2012, he spoke out against a culture of abuse he said had taken root therein. And in addition to the latest controversy, he also took aim at corporate financial reports, asserting: “Their numbers are very suspect.”

Google reported a 2,800% rise in searches for how to cancel Planet Fitness memberships recently, so it’s certainly not just the company’s founder who has deep concerns about its direction. But with nearly 19 million members, any immediate collapse is unlikely.

Chris Agee
Chris Agee April 10th, 2024
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