Gymshark predicts £100m sales this year, new HQ to drive fast staff expansion
Fast-expanding Gymshark has just opened a new, larger, UK HQ in Birmingham with the company planning to double its workforce from the current 150 staff over the next year as sales continue to surge.
The firm, which sell fitness clothing, has seen rapid growth in recent years (it was actually named the UK’s fastest-growing company in 2016) and has global ambitions that are reflected by its new HQ being able to accommodate up to 800 staff.
Founded in 2012 by Ben Francis, when he was 19, it saw sales of £42 million last year and had been targeting turnover of £80 million this time, but now says it expects to reach £100 million.
Francis, who is chief brand officer, told TheBusinessdesk that he wants “to be UK’s answer to Nike and Adidas” and that “I don’t think the UK has got anything to get behind in the fitness market, so hopefully we are it. This headquarters is just the beginning.”
The company currently sells only via its international websites but occasionally operates pop-ups to boost brand awareness, with its most recent being in Melbourne, Australia. A California pop-up in LA saw 10-hour queues and it will open one much closer to home next month with a short stay at The Warehouse in Digbeth, Birmingham, on May 12 and 13.
Gymshark has built a huge business by leveraging the power of social media with its main Instagram account having 2.1 million followers, which rivals that of Lululemon and is much bigger than that of Fabletics.
Meanwhile, its gymsharkwomen account has 1.1 million followers, Francis’s own account has 124,000 and Gymshark’s global ambassador, Canadian model Robin Gallant, who is also Francis’s girlfriend, has over 650,000.
Additionally, it has benefitted from celebrity fans with names including Shay Mitchell, Emma Roberts and Chanel Iman helping to propel it further into the public eye.
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