CURVES: Should Failed Franchises be Resold?

The Curves franchise on Thorold Stone Road, Niagra Falls reportedly closed overnight.

According to the Niagra Falls Review, members reportedly “worked out the day before and no one said anything and then came in the next morning and it was all dark and empty.” 

The sign on the door read: "Attention Curves members. Sorry closed for business. Thank you for your past support."

Members complained that they had just paid for the month and were given no notice whatsoever.  However, members are free to continue their memberships at other area Curves clubs.

CI’s main concern:  Finding a new owner

The Niagra Falls Review interviewed Becky Frusher, head of corporate communications at the Curves International Inc. head office in Texas:

She said the company will try to find a new owner for the women-only club so members are not disrupted.

"We regret to see any club close," she said. "Our main concern is getting the club back up and running, so that members can continue to enjoy the health benefits of our workout."

Shouldn’t Curves’ main concern be determining the reason for the failure?

While it may seem to members that their Curves franchise club closed overnight, it’s unlikely that it did.

After all, a franchise owner had a significant investment sunk into that club.  The odds are that they have tens of thousands of dollars in outstanding liabilities… money owed to CI, to their landlord, and to other creditors.  Isn’t it more likely that the club closed after a long and protracted effort to keep the club profitable and open?

The more than 500 comments posted here by struggling Curves franchise owners support that conclusion.

Shouldn’t Curves International’s priority be to determine whether the Niagra market could not support that club, rather than to put another owner in the same situation?

And if they find a new owner who reopens the club… will the surrounding clubs then lose the members they took in from the closed club?

WHAT DO YOU THINK?  SHARE A COMMENT BELOW.

36 thoughts on “CURVES: Should Failed Franchises be Resold?

  • March 31, 2010 at 5:08 pm
    Permalink

    Does anyone know of clubs that closed, were resold, then closed again?

    Conversely, does anyone know of any clubs that closed, were resold and reopened, and did well?

  • April 1, 2010 at 2:37 am
    Permalink

    I know of many clubs that closed or on the verge of closing that were sold and reopened only to go bankrupt and close again. I do not know of any that clubs that closed, reopened and did well. It would be my opinion that no territory that closed should be resold until the management of Curves has changed. As long as Howie is in charge of this franchise nothing is ever going to change. It has been estimated that there are only 3250 to 3500 clubs that are still open. A far cry from the 10,000 that were once open and that curves international still brags on their web site to have in operation. They are still closing at record numbers and it will be interesting to see if this franchise will still be around nest year.

  • April 1, 2010 at 2:57 am
    Permalink

    At the McCord Business Brokers Web site, my state has only FOUR clubs listed for sale under the company’s exclusive listings. Years ago, there would have been DOZENS of listings.

    The prices for the four clubs are $29,900, $29,900, $15,000 and $40,000. Years ago, those prices would have been in the six figures. Now these poor owners are desperate to unload these clubs at pathetically low prices, just to be rid of them.

    The bottom really has dropped out at Curves. How many are left?

  • April 1, 2010 at 3:14 am
    Permalink

    no one knows for sure except Howie but it appears somewhere between 3200 to 3500 at tops.

  • April 3, 2010 at 12:22 pm
    Permalink

    If you are planning to close your club and notify Curves International of your intent they are now sending out emails that tell owners closing is not an option. What a joke. Where was Howie when things started to go south for the clubs? All, he did was try to extort 10,000 dollars from each owner who closed. Now he is trying to tell owners closing g isn’t a option.! Pray tell Howie what is the option? Maybe you should have listened to the owners who were in the trenches when they asked for your help. If closing is no option why are you Howie trying to force the 24/7 clubs to close. All they have tried to do is to work out side the box to keep their doors open. But since it wasn’t your idea screw them terminate their contract. Is this going to be the next big lawsuit, Howie? Looks that way and it may be the final act for Howie as Curves is going down the drain and it appears its to be picking up steam.

  • April 5, 2010 at 2:43 am
    Permalink

    Interesting development. McCord Business Brokers, which used to sell ONLY Curves clubs, is now selling Curves clubs and NINE OTHER fitness franchises, including 123Fit. They’ve also done away with the the free “For Sale By Owner” listings for Curves.

    Guess the Curves listings were drying uyp, so McCord had to start offering OTHER clubs for sale. See for yourself.

    http://www.mccordbusinessbrokers.com//index.asp?choice=fsboListing

  • April 5, 2010 at 9:42 am
    Permalink

    Wiped Out:
    That is interesting. However, all of those fitness chains have a single owner: Diversified Health & Fitness.
    Diversified buys up franchise fitness chains that are in decline or even on their death beds. They enforce the contracts of the remaining franchisees and market franchises from their menu of different brands.
    We’ve written several stories on Diversified H&F, including a recent one about their use of discredited success statistics in their franchise marketing, and the fact that a large % of the franchisees they still use for testimonials have closed their clubs:
    DIVERSIFIED HEALTH: Testimonials From Failed Franchisees
    http://www.unhappyfranchisee.com/diversified-health-testimonials-from-failed-franchisees/.

  • April 5, 2010 at 1:11 pm
    Permalink

    I believe there were rumors over a year ago about Diversified Health taking over Curves but most owners at that time wrote it off as a bad joke. Unfortunately it may just come true if Curves clubs continue to close. Since March is usually the biggest month for new membership sign ups as a result of the food drive . It will be interesting to see how the remaining clubs did and if the numbers of new sign up is low we will see clubs closing picking up.

  • April 6, 2010 at 2:39 am
    Permalink

    None of the clubs that have closed in my county has reopened.

  • April 6, 2010 at 12:58 pm
    Permalink

    wipedout,
    what country are you from and how are the clubs doing there?

  • April 7, 2010 at 12:02 am
    Permalink

    Looks like the “For Sale By Owner” feature is back at McCord, but now it’s just a long list of Curves for sale acorss the US. Before, it was broken down by states.

    Unhappy, our county had 18 clubs. Now we’re down to seven.

  • April 7, 2010 at 11:58 am
    Permalink

    Less than half left and I’m sure there will be closing. Wipedout do you have skype? I’d love to talk to you.

  • April 7, 2010 at 12:04 pm
    Permalink

    How many Curves owners have read Slender Lady Founder Bruce Sharpe Has Died. I have to wonder if the curves owners will act the same when Howie dies? Will curves owners be doing the Fred Astair tap dance on his grave? Of course you would need a top hat and tux.

  • April 9, 2010 at 3:54 pm
    Permalink

    Hello I, too, will soon shut their club. My wife and Nedla worked in this business, but decided to close because the money you get a sense in the beginning, but then you start to make debts. While there is no debt and the glory of God. Tomorrow will send a letter with the notice of closure. What can I expect from them? I spoke with a representative of our country, and he began to scare us so that we will have to pay royalties until the end of the contract.

  • April 10, 2010 at 1:40 pm
    Permalink

    Is there an anti-Curves site on Facebook yet?

  • April 12, 2010 at 5:59 pm
    Permalink

    I have seen one yet but I don’t go to facebook so I wouldn’t know

  • April 16, 2010 at 12:15 pm
    Permalink

    Hello — I’m another suffering Curves owner, struggling to survive in New Jersey. What are the risks I run of closing my club early? My contract with Curves is for another 3 years
    I’ve been told I will just get a few letters demanding money, but that I should just ignore them.
    ANy thoughts?
    Thanks
    Robert

  • April 16, 2010 at 12:47 pm
    Permalink

    Hello The fact that the 10 000 dollars, no one can you take it. And who in other countries pay attention to praviltnost and legitimacy of your contract. Your start to blackmail royalty for 10 years, and the like. All this is nonsense. When shut her tell what has been the case. I already want as quickly as possible is asdelat.

  • April 16, 2010 at 1:37 pm
    Permalink

    sent them a message about the fact that I close, I did not respond for about 5 days. I sent them a letter with my original signature. I was told that they are studying the situation of my club and the possibility of resale and the like. Regarding the money yet said nothing, but I think that will say. The contract which they shoved people, it is a complete violation of human rights. If it is submitted to the European Commission franchises, it can be disputed. I do not know how things work in your country. I do not think that the court would be on their side. That’s what I read and what my wife and I went for the short time that we had a club is just a nightmare. infinitely afraid to come do not come buy not buy. And when the crisis hit, the people in general was not up to fitness. We must bedm return money to people who do not use their cards. Can not write to my e-mail when shut tell all that will happen. Maybe then we’ll have sued the curves. Anlliysky is not my native language. If you know spanish you can write me in Spanish. I do not know how you survived 7 years, it’s just horrible, what you should do.

  • April 16, 2010 at 1:39 pm
    Permalink

    I sent them a message about the fact that I close, I did not respond for about 5 days. I sent them a letter with my original signature. I was told that they are studying the situation of my club and the possibility of resale and the like. Regarding the money yet said nothing, but I think that will say. The contract which they shoved people, it is a complete violation of human rights. If it is submitted to the European Commission franchises, it can be disputed. I do not know how things work in your country. I do not think that the court would be on their side. That’s what I read and what my wife and I went for the short time that we had a club is just a nightmare. infinitely afraid to come do not come buy not buy. And when the crisis hit, the people in general was not up to fitness. We must bedm return money to people who do not use their cards. Can not write to my e-mail when shut tell all that will happen. Maybe then we’ll have sued the curves. English is not my native language. If you know spanish you can write me in Spanish. I do not know how you survived 7 years, it’s just horrible, what you should do.

  • April 16, 2010 at 2:00 pm
    Permalink

    Robert in NJ
    send email to an Admin at unhappyfranchisee@gmail.com. requesting it be forwarded to me with your phone number and I will contact you and go over your options

  • April 17, 2010 at 7:17 pm
    Permalink

    We have decided to close our Truckee California Club. We bought it in June 2007 for 250.000.000. The club was t hriving. I am down to 75 members, we are going broke. I sent in documents to Curves for t hem to review, one week ago. We will close our doors as of June 1, ,what should I expect, is t here a class action lawsuit to get involved with? What do you do with the equipment, files, etc. Please help!

  • April 18, 2010 at 8:40 am
    Permalink

    Hello Ketrin! I’m not from America. I also sent a message to the curves, but they replied that they consider my application and in the near future contact with us. My club in one of the countries of Eastern Europe, in our country, this product is generally sold illegally. So I can not tell them about the closure. The contract that we signed has no legal effect, for many reasons But it’s all null and void or in America nor in our country. So what else can I arrange an international scandal, most likely will do that, that would be me my money back and told all the owners in my country that they can make a shit. I understand that you Americans will send you some documents that will be agreement on the withdrawal of your right to appeal to the court and they want that would you account for your equipment delivered, there where they are told. You do not sign anything. Later you can ask for money for the remaining royalties for 10 years. You do not pay them, the contract was not expressly written. Then he can ask for 10 000 dollars, then 6 000, this is what I read in the forum. Close the account of your company or change the card number and they can not withdraw money from you. You can still sue them because it would bring people to the poverty line. Refer to a lawyer, write a complaint to all Gschsudarstvennye authorities where possible. But did not sign. I know that my case is much simpler, the contract does not comply with laws and I go to the prosecutor and to begin a criminal case for fraud and English is not my native language. I wish you good luck, write, will you cheer and you have to believe that life after the vinyl is much better than them.

  • April 18, 2010 at 8:59 am
    Permalink

    Hi Katherine and Randall! Another might threaten you infringe on your personal property. It’s all nonsense. Can offer to resell, and the like. If this is beginning to bear losses zakryvaytee it all and do not hesitate. We thank God not logged in debt and unable to return dentgi members of the club. But other clubs in our country already deep in debt to all. So think and decide for yourself.

  • May 19, 2010 at 7:04 am
    Permalink

    Robert in NJ
    send email to an Admin at unhappyfranchisee@gmail.com. requesting it be forwarded to me with your phone number and I will contact you and go over your options

  • May 19, 2010 at 12:51 pm
    Permalink

    katherine,
    send email to an Admin at unhappyfranchisee@gmail.com. requesting it be forwarded to me with your phone number and I will contact you and go over your options. Do not sign anything curves send you until you talk to me.

  • May 19, 2010 at 4:28 pm
    Permalink

    Hello I closed my club May 1, 2010. Prior to this, we sent a letter to the central office of curves with the notice of our closing. We responded in a letter that they would look into the situation of our club and get in touch with us. Then came the suggestion that we should pay royalties for a few months and determine the closing date. But we could not pay any rent or wages. The only thing we could – it is to extinguish all the members, thank God they left not so much. Who knows what will happen afterwards and how long? What should I expect from the curves and what they can do?

  • May 19, 2010 at 5:32 pm
    Permalink

    FitDude posted this on Curves Robert Lay’s story early today.
    There goes another one……
    http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/business/economy-new-competitor-taking-toll-on-area-fitness-businesses-1.793133

    I just went to the link and read the article. What a shame and what a bunch of crap from Curves Internationals employee who is quoted in the article. At the end of the article the author or writer leaves their email address to comment about the article. Curves owners not only need to read the article but need to send an email to the writer asking them to do a news story on Curves telling the real truth of what is happening and why all the clubs are closing. Curves Owners it is time we get the real truth out and here is a chance to do just that by sending an email to the author of the news story. Please do so at once!!!!!!!

    Unhappy

  • May 22, 2010 at 9:39 am
    Permalink

    We want to thank everyone who has written in to the author of the new story as they have been overwhelmed and are looking into doing a story about what is really happening to curves. Keep up the good work!!!!!!

  • May 23, 2010 at 3:34 pm
    Permalink

    Katherine,

    Do not Katherine, sign anything you recieve from CII nor follow any of their closing advice until you talk to me. Send an email to admin at unhappyfranchisee@gmail.com with your phone number and I will call you asap and explain what you can expect from curves and different options you have.

    AGAIN KATHERINE DO NOT SIGN ANYTHING UNTIL YOU TALK TO US.

  • May 23, 2010 at 3:41 pm
    Permalink

    Hello Thank you for your support. We must all unite and act together against those cheaters and deceivers. Together we can protect ourselves. Above all we can together to pay lawyers, so it will cost us less. I offered to unite all those who in Europe suffered from the Company curves. I learned that they want to sell the 250 clubs in India, 250 in Ukraine, Poland, the Czech Republic. This new victims and bankrupt. I can not understand why people are the passive and unwilling to unite in the fight against the curves. Or prefer to be afraid of their own.

  • May 23, 2010 at 6:33 pm
    Permalink

    Andres,
    You are right on—– unite the owners in Europe and spread the word about how corrupted CII and Howie are Start writing letters to all the major new papers. Tell the other owners where to go for help and send them to unhappy franchise.

    We are helping make the world one million women stronger by spreading the truth about Curves International and Howie. You can, too, /Find out how by going to http://www.unhappyfranchisee.com/curves-should-failed-franchises-be-resold/#comment-26453.

  • May 28, 2010 at 5:52 pm
    Permalink

    California State at this time refuses to allow Curves franchisees from bein sold!!!

    Attention all owners

    We have just become aware that there is a major investigation of Curves International and Gary Howard Heavin in the State of Ca. As most owners know before an individual can buy a franchise the franchise must send out a FDD document 14 days before the buyer is allowed to sign a franchise contract. The FDD document is filed not only with the Federal Trade Commission but is required to be on file in certain States. In California this FDD document must be filed each year by the end of March. The FDD document covers the previous year and included in that document the franchise must list current financial information, any lawsuits filed against the franchise and all current and closed franchise locations.

    Upon going to the California Department of Corporations site for franchise renewal at
    http://134.186.208.228/caleasi/search.asp?TASKNAME=xshowDocs&PackageID=286753 you will see that the most current FDD was filed March 2009 and was for the year 2008. We contacted the CA. Dept. of Corporations to find out when the new FDD document would be posted and we were told Curves had filed the document but that the CA Dept. of Corporations State lawyer’s had refuse to allow it to be filed as it contained what they considered fraudulent statements. I asked what that meant and the CA. Dept. of Corporations Lawyers told me that the state lawyers were working on the filing with the Curves lawyers but no resolution had been made as of yet. At that time we asked the CA. Dept. of Corporations Lawyer since it was not filed if Curves could still sell franchise and use the old 08 FDD and he replied absolutely not. So our next question was, well can Curves still sell franchisee at this time and the CA. Dept. of Corporations Lawyer put me on hold to ask another lawyer who was handling the actual case. When the CA Dept. of Corporations Lawyer came back on the phone he said no that Curves was not allowed to sell franchisee in the State of Ca. at this time but if they can satisfy the filing requirements in he future they maybe allowed to continue doing so. I than asked if he was aware of how fraudulent Curves was with dealing with the owners and he replied yes he was aware that many complaints had been filed and that if any owners of Curves had a complaint during the last three years they should go to the web site http://www.corp.ca.gov/default.asp and file a complaint immediately as Curves only had until the end of June to respond or a court case would be filed against Curves for failure to file the required documents. So in conclusion, Curves International can not sell franchises in the state of California at this time and any California Curves owner who has a complaint with Curves needs to immediately file a complaint with the California Department of Corporations at site http://www.corp.ca.gov/default.asp.

  • Pingback:CURVES: Curves Posts on Unhappy Franchisee : Unhappy Franchisee

  • August 3, 2010 at 10:00 am
    Permalink

    Has anyone in Australia contacted Curves and closed a franchise with their consent. If so how did you do it? Did you get a release from Curves. How much did it cost?

  • August 4, 2010 at 2:40 am
    Permalink

    Got $35? Then YOU can own a resale Curves in sunny Florida! From McCord Business brokers. . .

    Territory Name Longwood, FL
    Square Feet: 1,200
    Number of Stations 24

    Asking Price $35.00

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *