ISPA Conference & Expo
ISPA Conference & Expo
ISPA Conference & Expo

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James Balfour, Giles Dean and Kevin Yates

1Rebel


After much anticipation and a raft of headlines, the first 1Rebel microgym has launched in the City of London, UK.

The company, which aims to shake up the fitness industry as a ‘market disrupter’ – in a similar vein to businesses like Airbnb – has plans for another six to eight boutiques across the City over the next few years. In an interview with Health Club Management, co-founder James Balfour said the brand is designed “to bridge the gap between fitness and fashion” and is targeted at millennials.

The club is cashless, paperless and pay-as-you-train, with customers signing up online, and ‘paying’ for things in-club via their ID.

“We’re passionate about market disrupters: companies with conviction and a will to change things, not for the sake of change, but because changing would make things better,” said Giles Dean, who co-founded the company with James Balfour, bringing in fitness industry veteran Kevin Yates as ops director.

The club is spread over a ground floor and basement, and offers 8,000sq ft of space structured around two studios with theatre-grade lighting. There’s also a reception area, café and changing rooms.

The club’s interior, which has been designed by London-based architect firm Studio C102, is described as “industrial luxe” and features lots of reclaimed items and unexpected details like fire hoses being used for the hand shower attachments.

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company profile
Company profile: Alliance Leisure
The company’s core business is the provision of facility development and support for local authorities, educational establishments and leisure trusts that want to improve or expand the leisure products and services they offer.
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ISPA Conference & Expo
ISPA Conference & Expo