What is the Potential of Kuwait Fitness Service Market?
The Kuwait Fitness Service Market has shown tremendous growth. Rising population in the age group of 15-44 years and increasing obesity rate has been complimenting the size of this industry. Coupled with increasing percentage of females in the population, there has been a significant shift of fitness service providers towards female-specific gyms and fitness clubs. The one month package has the biggest share followed by 1 year, 3 months and 6 months’ packages. Hawalli and Al-Asimah have been the major regions. Major reasons for the increase in demand have been the higher per capita income in Kuwait, penetration of international players and diversified services portfolio in Kuwait.
Expanding services portfolio of major players and aggressive marketing strategies have helped the market to grow at a CAGR of ~% during the review period. There has been an improved focus on expanding the number of fitness centers of major players and adapting to the latest technologies, leading to a gradual increase in fitness service demand. Changing lifestyle and increasing national disposable income have further led to an increase in the demand of fitness services. There has been a significant increase in government support and private participation to promote Kuwait fitness services. The Kuwait fitness service market has huge potential for new domestic and foreign players in terms of profitability and growth.
What have been the Major Revenue Streams in the Market?
Demand for personal training has increased on account of increase in health awareness of the urban population especially in the age bracket of 25 years and above. Consumers are shifting from gym services to value added services including Personal Training, Zumba, Spa, Pool, Sauna, Jacuzzi, Yoga and others because of the added benefits of these services. The revenue generated from gym services was KWD ~ Million in 2017. Growing instances of lifestyle diseases, increasing disposable income, and rising consciousness among consumers about health have propelled the growth of this segment. Several new brands have been entering the fitness services section, for instance, Peak Fitness, Al Corniche, Pilates and More providing personal training facilities. Personal training services have generated revenue of KWD ~ Million in 2017. This accounts for ~% share of the total fitness service market size. The increasing certification courses and training facilities for personal trainers have increased the quality of their services which has helped augment the market size of personal training. This continuous growth in the demand for qualified fitness professionals will help revenue from personal training to grow faster than the gym membership revenue in the coming future.
How Have the Various regions in Kuwait Performed in the Review Period?
The fitness services have always been absorbed by the urban and semi-urban areas of the country. These include Hawalli, Al-Asimah and Al-Ahmadi. A primary reason for the concentration of fitness centers in these cities has been the fact that these cities have been the most populous and economically powerfully in Kuwait. The set of audience living here usually prefers a healthy lifestyle and has the resources to spend on fitness services. Hence, major fitness centers place high preference to location around these two provinces. People in these big cities have a more hectic and sedentary lifestyle which in turn makes them more unhealthy and in need of fitness services. Keeping in mind the need of this consumer group the centers around these regions provide services including weight loss, yoga, functional training and others that are necessary to keep the body fit and healthy. Jahra in spite of being the largest governorate by area has only one fitness center because it contains most of the arable land of Kuwait and most Jharans are farmers with lack of resources to pay for fitness services. Hence, the demand for fitness centers is less in this region. Jahara and Mubarak Al Kabeer showcase opportunities for future service providers to expand to these regions.
What has been the share of different membership packages in the Review Period?
The people in Kuwait have the highest preference for the one month package as it provides the option of experimenting with several gyms for short durations and trying new activities. It is highly preferred by people joining gyms for the first time. Them a long term membership option. The second most preferred package is the one year package because major organized fitness centers in Kuwait do not offer other membership subscriptions for 6 months, 3 months and 1 month. For instance, Al Corniche and C-Club have been generating their revenue by selling one year membership packages for gym services and providing personal training facilities. Generally, it has been found that the fitness centers use tier pricing to attract customers to buy long-term packages. The one year packages have been the cheapest in relation to the other membership packages. Also, customers look for the best offers and discounts in the market when choosing a membership package. The one year packages generally come with several offers including 1-2 month free, freezing option, free services (massage, personal training sessions) and others which attract the customers.
What Is The State Of The Completion Landscape In Kuwait Fitness Service Market?
Competition Stage: The competition in the Kuwait Fitness service market has been largely fragmented due to large number of brands and fitness centers. Key regional players include Fitness First, Flex Fitness, Circuit Plus, Spark Athletic Center, Flare Fitness, Desert Fitness, Peak Fitness, Al-Corniche, Palms Beach Club, The C-Club and Sweat Studios. The market is highly concentrated in the region of Al Asimah and Hawalli due to presence of commercial hubs and large number of wealthy population with resources to pay for the expensive fitness services of the organized gyms. A gradual consumer shift towards brand acceptance and new demand for female specific fitness centers has encouraged service providers to expand to new regions including Mubarak Al-Kabeer and Jahra.
Company Positioning: There are about 20 major organized centers with a total of 49 outlets in the Kuwait fitness service market. These players have fierce competition among them and they have been continuously experimenting through new innovations, services, packages, discounts, offers and business strategies to expand their reach across Kuwait.
Competing Parameters: The major parameters on the basis of which the players in the market compete with each other are technological advancement and equipments, variety in services and facilities offered, experienced and qualified fitness personnel, membership packages in terms of different durations and prices, offers and discounts, marketing strategies.
What Factors Have Driven The Kuwait Fitness Service Market?
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) has been a major trend in 2017. Major fitness service providers in Kuwait have started generating revenue from providing HIIT exercises. Demand for Kuwait fitness services has increased on account of increase in health consciousness and obesity rates of the urban population especially in the age bracket of 15 years and above. Female specific fitness centers demand has increased manifold due to the changing social norms and adoption of western lifestyle therefore allowing women to join fitness centers. Expanding services portfolio, latest equipments and technology, increasing number of certification courses and increase in fitness awareness have been the major growth drivers of Kuwait fitness service market. The workplace fitness promotion and concern of employers towards the health of their employees has initialized the trend of corporate membership in fitness centers in Kuwait. The increasing popularity of fitness technology has positively driven the fitness service market in Kuwait.
What are the major challenges for Kuwait Fitness Service providers?
Scalability has been one of the biggest problems faced by the fitness service providers in Kuwait due to the high cost of setting a fitness center. Increasing the number and size of gyms require high investment funds and often fitness service providers do not find themselves in a position to expand due to lack of resources. Land rates are very high in Kuwait which tends to increase the set up cost of a gym. Organized gym generally require large land as they provide high quality facilities such as swimming pool, sauna and steam bath, sports room, juice bars and many other such facilities. Retaining certified and experienced trainers has become a strenuous task for fitness operators. Majority of the certified trainers prefer to work on their own as a freelance trainer thus, making it tremendously difficult for fitness centers to retain trainers and to provide regular training to their clients. With small profit margins in this industry, cost of gym maintenance, hiring professional trainers, expensive decorations and high cost of equipment maintenance acts as a challenge by involving recurring maintenance expenses. In Kuwait freelancing has become very common and it turns out to be negative factor for fitness services market. Higher demand has been observed among people for private training session and yoga session at their homes from certified professional trainers working as freelancers. Marketing has been very necessary for the fitness centers to attract customers. But fitness centers have been forced to depend on ‘word of the mouth’ marketing because of the high cost of advertising and marketing. This limits the revenue of the fitness industry. Fitness centers in Kuwait need to overcome these hurdles for steady growth.
What Are The Possible Future Opportunities in the Market?
Only around 20-25 centers are located in Al Jahra, Mubarak Al Kabeer and Al Farwaniyah. These places have a huge potential customer base. Hence, introduction of fitness centers in such sub-urban areas to provide high class fitness facilities should be the focus of upcoming centers. Prevalence of obesity is more in females in Kuwait. But due to lack of female specific fitness centers they are unable to access the fitness services. New female specific fitness centers that provide services to this section of population will help increase the size of Kuwait Fitness Service market. There is huge potential for gyms specifically providing fitness facilities for children due to the increasing demand for such services. Continuous increase in the health conscious population and demand for PT services offers new opportunities to the players providing such fitness services. Customer retention is a major challenge for fitness service companies. This can be solved by adopting innovative marketing strategies including offers on long-term memberships (6 months and 1 year), Couple discounts and provision of free services (massage, freezing of membership, 1-2 months free and others) along with membership packages. The Kuwait fitness service market is dominated by self-owned fitness centers. The new players can set up franchise models as it requires less investment and has an added advantage of an established brand name. These innovations will help players to generate higher revenues and help the Kuwait fitness industry to grow.
What Are The Future Estimations About The Market And Its Segments?
The Kuwait fitness service market had been showcasing a substantial rate of growth during the past few years. During the review period 2012-2017 the market has grown at a CAGR of ~%. The forecast period, 2018-2022, is expected to register a CAGR of ~%.Growth during this period shall be supported by the increasing income, expanding geographical presence of major players, increasing demand for personal training and other integrated services, innovative marketing strategies and diversifying services portfolio. Male members have been analyzed to capture ~% of Kuwait fitness service market share by 2022.The increasing demand for integrated services is anticipated to escalate the number of organized centers at a significant pace over the period 2017-2022. As a result, the share of organized sector in the overall market is expected to rise to ~% by 2022 in future. Rising disposable incomes, increasing obesity rates, increasing population in the age group of 15-44 years and growing awareness of health and fitness services will be fuelling demand for fitness services in Kuwait.
Kuwait Organized Fitness Services Providers: Fitness First, Flex Fitness, Ras Al Salmiya, Orange Theory Fitness, Rush Gym, Circuit plus, Spark Athletic Center, Al Corniche, C-Club, Palms Beach Club, Inspire Fitness, Oxygen Gym, Active Fitness, Platinum Gym, Peak Fitness, Sweat Studios, Pilates And More, Flare Fitness, Desert Fitness
Kuwait Unorganized Fitness Services Providers: Alta Fitness, Hero Gym, Steam gym, Studio X, Physique, Trim Club, Marina Fitness Center, Jumeriah Fitness Center, La Femme, Hype Gym, Hiltonia, Gold’s gym, Lady Power, Keep Fit Gym, iFitness and others
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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications