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CURVES Monty Sharma’s WTF? Email to Curves Franchisees about Jenny Craig Acquisition

Curves franchise owners are trying to figure out what impact their parent North Castle Partner’s acquisition of Jenny Craig will have on them.

UnhappyFranchisee.com posted news of the acquisition here:  CURVES Owner North Castle Partners Acquires Jenny Craig and the company press release here: CURVES: North Castle Partners Press Release on Jenny Craig Acquisition.

Curves CEO & President Monty Sharma sent this email to Curves franchisees sharing his excitement regarding the acquisition.

Curves franchisees are trying to figure out what the excitement is about.  Or what this even means.

Sharma makes seemingly contradictory statements that have left many scratching their heads.

First, he states “North Castle Partners also announced its plans to merge Jenny Craig and Curves International to create a one-of-a-kind wellness company that offers consumers an array of diet and fitness tools to meet their individual and varying preferred weight loss needs.”

So it sounds as if Curves franchisees will be able to offer Jenny Craig products and services in their clubs.

Than Sharma states:  “Our plans are to operate these two businesses separately and independently since they appeal to different consumer segments.”


Hasn’t North Castle has been forcing Curves franchisees to implement a Curves weight loss program?

Does this mean that North Castle has just acquired a direct competitor of Curves?

Isn’t “Women who want to lose weight” a single – and the same – consumer segment?

If someone can make heads or tails of what’s happening here – and what it means to Curves International franchisees and Jenny Craig operators, please leave a comment below.

Email from Monty Sharma:

Dear Franchisee Partner,

I am excited to share with you that this morning North Castle Partners announced the acquisition of Jenny Craig from Nestle. Jenny Craig is a leading brand in weight management with centers across North America, Australia and New Zealand.

North Castle Partners also announced its plans to merge Jenny Craig and Curves International to create a one-of-a-kind wellness company that offers consumers an array of diet and fitness tools to meet their individual and varying preferred weight loss needs.

Our plans are to operate these two businesses separately and independently since they appeal to different consumer segments.  However, we believe there are many things the Curves system can benefit from over time through this merger. We will combine the companies [sic] back end operations to create best in class process and support to you our franchisee partner while looking for ways the two brands can benefit from each other.

Closing of the transaction is expected in a few weeks and thereafter we will begin the work of the merger. As the teams from Jenny Craig and Curves begins to work alongside each other we will keep you updated via the quarterly action group meetings.

I look forward to seeing you this week or next at the Regional Meetings to share with you all the exciting developments and new programs we are launching at Curves for 2014 and the years ahead.

Best regards,

Monty Sharma

Curves CEO and President

Also read:

CURVES: Curves Posts on Unhappy Franchisee

CURVES: Robert Lay’s Story (1100+ comments)

JENNY CRAIG Consumer Complaints



Contact UnhappyFranchisee.com

TAGS: Curves, Curves International, North Castle Partners, Jenny Craig, Monty Sharma, Curves buys Jenny Craig, Curves franchise, curves franchisees

30 thoughts on “CURVES Monty Sharma’s WTF? Email to Curves Franchisees about Jenny Craig Acquisition

  • Wow unhappy franchisee, well said!!!! You must have read my mind! You hit every single thing that has left me scratching my head and making me say WTF??
    One thing I love in Monty’s statement is when he says ” However, we believe there are many things the Curves system can benefit from over time” OVER TIME…REALLY… OVER TIME!! So while we are crashing and burning we can find comfort in that Monty thinks over time we could benefit!!! WE DONT HAVE TIME ON OUR SIDE!!! WTF!

  • Carol Joyce

    I remember a couple years ago, how CC was going to knock Jenny Craig and WW out of the park. How on earth will CC be non competitive with JC? This will be interesting………….

  • Thats true Carol joyce, that is what they said! So I guess they figure if you cant beat them join them….of course its not to help us owners as individual clubs

  • mary good

    I took over my Curves last Jan. The previous owner ran it into the ground. I was happy with the new level of support that CI was beginning to give owners. I was also happy that Curves will be uniform in looks. Our previous owner wasn’t giving the customer Curves at all…it had eroded into a drop-in, chat, and move a little on some old dirty machines. We went from 60 members to 100 members in 3 months. Unfortunately, Curves Complete failed. It lacks the group consciousness that WW has. Now Jillian Michaels will be in video in clubs. Jenny Craig will probably be a cross referral kind of relationship. Maybe business will pick up. The one thing that CI fails to notice is that many of our members are NOT coming for diet or weight loss. They are either senior citizens coming for movement activity, or women who have been steady customers for 9 years but won’t weigh in and still wear a size 4XXL! I think Monty Sharma is trying to breathe life into a system that is doomed to fail. We have no young members, and the older women simply age out. This is not a franchise where anyone can make money. It is only a hobby, and a labor of love if, like me, you have lost weight via Curves. The only way to suceed is to run your business the Curves way. Accept the fact that the “old” Curves is gone with Diane, and the “New” Curves has the potential to be awesome….for a whole new set of customers. Best of luck to you all.

  • Mary, I wish you the best and no harm….however in another year check back and let us know how its going….would love to know if this becomes all that you hope it will. So many owners came in with the very same attitude as you….passion, positive attitudes, loving curves, trying to do it all the way curves wanted….but along the way, it all broke down, and it wasnt what they thought it would be….and it wasnt because they didnt care, or refused to do what curves wanted, it was because their hopes, sacrifice and hard work wasnt working, curves wasnt working!! Just as you have already seen the recent failure of curves complete it is a prime example of the same old curves hype. Every new thing brings a whole set of new expenses, after putting out money for all the new things, tv…mats…clothes…and new equipment…let us know how much your business increases and if the revenue will off set those expenses…time will tell… As time progressed, they ran out of money and couldnt make the changes or improvements and it became more and more oppressive and hopeless, it depleted their bank account business and personal, affected their homes, their lives, their family and their health….did they start that way, no! They started just like you! At the end of their days with their club, whether they sold, gave it away or closed, nothing about the club or themselves looked or operated well anymore…..but it doesnt necessarily mean thats the way they started, all you saw was their tragic ending….for your sake, I hope your right about all the new things, but what I see is just the same old hype, the same hype that drove others into the ground. The best of luck to you

  • I’ve been a Curves owner for 6 years. I have a cheery, clean club. I still believe in the Curves program. I have a relatively new member (less than 2 months) that just went to the Dr & all her test results are half what they were the last time!! I’m almost as happy as she is!

    Most of my membership also are either senior citizens coming for movement activity, or women who have been steady customers for 9 years but won’t weigh in & still wear a size 4XXL! At least they are doing something! Maybe, the new Jillian “metabolic conditioning” moves will change that. I don’t think so – not in my small town. The younger women think hiking, biking, skiing, & even walking are enough workout. They don’t understand that working out at Curves makes them stronger for those other activities.

    The new investment/upgrade costs are prohibitive (nearly $1,500 by Dec 31st). Plus, there are new mandatory minimum monthly or quarterly expenses. Curves will no longer provide marketing materials. We’ll have to buy an unknown minimum $$ amount each month. Also have to purchase $500 wholesale of new clothing line by Dec 31st. I haven’t sold that much clothing in 6 years……plus must be updated quarterly. I have already run out of money & can’t afford to make the changes/improvements. It’s become more & more oppressive and hopeless!

    So, despite my desire, I’ll be closing my club in Feb 2014. I’m really gonna miss it & all my wonderful ladies! Too bad Curves International doesn’t want to help us out!

  • Dear Kris, I am so sorry that the new requirements have pushed you over the edge….they are pushing many over the edge and I hear of more closings everyday….Curves continues to make their money by emptying our pockets, and nothing they force on us has in anyway brought new memberships, they profit and we go deeper into the hole.
    I am closing Dec 31st, you are not alone, yet it doesnt help relplace all we have lost, take care

  • aussie Z

    Hi I am an ex owner from Australia and would love (just out of curiosity) how many clubs are left in the US. We have lost nearly half of ours over here, and with the 10 years agreements nearly up for some of the clubs I’m wondering if alot more will go. I hope you all have a wonderful christmas and remember there is life after curves.

  • I have just closed my club and my members fall into the same catagory as Kris’s. I have a small club(had) in a small town. I took over a resale and I have only managed to keep going for two of my five years. The club was never a money maker, the previous owner had another lucrative career that enabled her to have deep pockets…..and her love for the members and Curves kept her digging into them. I have no pockets, just a lot of love. As you know that can only go so far! I have had so many calls from other owners who have to decide whether to close or not, and they all want to know what Curves is doing to me because of having so much time left to my contract. There is so little support for those of us who are in this position. I wish I new more about creating a Web site because I think we all need a strong support network. I think we are going to be dealing with alot of PTS symptoms in the months to come~
    I don’t know what Curves will want from me. At this point I cannot worry about that, there is no more money. I may be in a better position than some, or maybe not…I have no assets at all. Not even a life insurance policy. I am not quite sure how I ever got approved. At the time I was thrilled, I never claimed to have any so there is no deception on my part. Now if I had a home to lose, I would be far more worried.
    I sat in my empty club yesterday and sobbed. Up until then I think I was in denial, just doing what needed doing, but all of a sudden I was hit with all these flashbacks of the past two years. It was like all the joys and sorrows shared in those walls were dancing around me. My members faces, their smiles and tears…………..ugh. I am proud of what I was able to provide my ladies with during my short time with them, I refuse to feel like a failure and I won’t allow myself to feel like I deserve to be punished for trying my very best to make my club profitable. There are different types of success in life and I have become a better person because of the members I have grown to love. That being said, I have made a note to self to never, ever, do the franchisee thing again!!!. Thanks, I feel better, Happy 2014. May you all find strength and peace this year.

  • Former Pruned Owner

    I was an owner for many years in the early days. I closed before my contract was over because I would not bankrupt myself to keep open a business driven by a narcissistic misogynist who was incapable of telling the truth. As he flew around the world, bought his wife a friendship with Olivia and bragged to all who would listen about how wonderful he was with his Christian ways, many many people lost everything they had.

    If you are having any doubts, I can tell you it was the best thing I ever did was to get away and be done with Curves. I am happy, joyous and free. There is no reason to think it is your failure alone, they share responsibility, but will never acknowledge that. I was in the time of being referred to as a “pruned” club. I have never looked back. Good luck to those of you still struggling. Nothing will save you if you are in bad shape. It is called throwing good money after bad.

  • Hello! I am in canada and have had all the same problems as so many other people and have got a notice in the mail saying they want a 23,000 closing fee when i closed for obvious reasons..does anyone have advice or the name of a canadian lawyer they have used to fight this with their franchise? Any info would be greatly appreciated!! Thx!! [redacted]

  • I am closing my club when the agreement expires this July. North Castle executives either have NO CLUE (they haven’t been owners) or they were serious when they said that some clubs would be sacrificed The Jillian program has been received well at my club. I bought their TV that came through Best Buy even though I could have bought it cheaper myself–without their getting the kick back. But I cannot afford the, mats, required bundles of clothes, the required display, the required bars—and it goes on and on. I took their joke of and “assessment” for the Jillian moves for April, but since I don’t have mats, I am “out of compliance” and won’t get any move of the Jillian videos. Our clothing is nice, but too expensive for most of our members. The bars have arrived melted, smashed, and discolored. the replacements they sent were in the same shape. The Curves.com website is only partially developed and not useable. We have talked for years and years about how other diet plans are inferior–like Nurtisystem, WW, and Jenny Craig, and now they want us to sell Jenny Craig. Did you know that until a few weeks ago, Monty, the CEO of BOTH Curves and Jenny Craig, was only using his Jenny Craig email address, not the one at curves.com? National news reports that since Monty left Adkins (to come to Curves) their sales are actually up. Since North Castle took over NOTHING has happened in the timeframe we need and that they promised. My advertising royalty used to pay for flyers, standees, posters, etc., but now I have to purchase them. I am required to display the posters in black frames, at the same height, on the same wall, in the same order. I understand the concept of a franchise, but other companies provide advertising materials. I am tired of having inferior products and having them late. MY integrity is damaged in my small city. I took money from my retirement account to purchase this club so I don’t actually owe anything on it, but I am walking away!

  • Hello, Karen, Jen & Lynn,

    My firm, Bridge Management Consulting, helps small business owners them who are struggling with overwhelming debt resulting from a failing or closed business.

    We’ve helped with unearned franchise fees, terminating franchise agreements, and non-compete clauses. We specialize in SBA loans and the Offer in Compromise procedure, and we help settle vendor debt, landlord/lease problems and other financial obligations resulting from a failed business.

    We’ve handled several franchisees who need to get out of their particular franchise hell, and we’ve successfully fought back on behalf of our clients. Don’t give into them!

    Feel free to contact:

    Ryan Lineham, Director of Client Services

  • Dee Dee Cooke

    Wow, combined “back end” …to “testing” just one.. to hiring for a bunch of corporate Jenny Curves combinations. http://curvesjennycareers.com/ . Curves owners are hearing all sorts of tidbits from nearby Jenny Craigs. I find it unbelievable that remaining Curves (that have not been pruned) have not been told how they will fit in to NCP’s plan ( with Gary consulting). If it was going to be good, you’d think they would be shouting it from the rooftops. I’ve only heard a couple of Curves owners that are positive about the possibilities, the rest seem, well, LIVID! How do you owners see this turning out?

  • Maria Pedrera

    Grand opening Tustin……..Dublin Coming on Aug 1, pulling Appointments form San Ramon Curves wish is closed

  • sadden

    Just received an email from Curves about the upcoming information meeting for increase revenue with Jenny Craig. Now they are wanting us to build a 7.5 X 7.5 office for Jenny Craig consulting! Really? Our competitor so between the lines they say curves complete is no longer top priority just shelf life food delivered to your door. What is happening?

  • Sick of it!!

    Fyi starting Jan 2015 Touchstone Health is changing to a $20 a month member reimbursement!!! . Which means that we have to charge those members a monthly fee and in turn they the member will be reimbursed $20 a month.. I don’t know about anybody else but I know if I charge these Touchstone members anymore than the $20 a month they are going to quit. Most of these members are on a disability or elderly and don’t have the extra money to afford Curves..The thing that is really upsetting me is that I wrote the “HELP” desk and they informed me that they “Curves” is unaware of any changes with Touchstone for the coming year!!! While waiting for that BS answer I called Touchstone myself and got confirmation that yes they are changing the Wellness benefit to a reimbursement!! So as usual we the “franchisee” is the last to know!!! I emailed curves back to say I had already got my answer from Touchstone and thanks for making their Franchisee owner feel like a uninformed idiot!!! Can’t wait to see what’s next!!!

  • any feedback on anyone who closed before contract ended and if they are still pursuing them for reimbursement? di you use a lawyer or just close down? Please send some info, please. I want to close but fear I will damage myself more by just shutting the doors.

  • Well Pamela I am closing be closing before my contract is up. I cannot do this anymore I have been in business f or 8 years now and have not made any money. For the last two have relied on family helping with finances. I am closing but cannot afford the fees involved for CI. It’s a shame so many are closing. They will need to squeeze blood out of a turnip if they want money that I do not have. I have been asking for advice but haven’t had any replies on here.

  • Anne Stewart

    We closed our franchise in June this year, 17 months into a five year agreement. We had contacted the law office of Jon Fortman (just google him) and his office helped us close without violating Curves instructions. They wanted $26,000+ and I just sent him the letter. He wrote back disputing their claim which stops them from harassing us. You should check you credit ratings periodically, though.

  • Shary Rose

    I closed my club in June 2014. Does anyone know if there is a Class Action Law Suit pending against Curves? My problems are the same as all of yours. Biggest Nightmare of my life. I Just want to get on board with it if there is a suit pending.

  • to Anne Stewart, can you give me any info on what the lawyer cost you (just the neighborhood of it) if you are both in the same state and if you have settled anything yet. I’m still hanging in but I don’t know how much longer.

  • I bought my Curves from the previous owner in September of 2012 after managing it for two years only to find out in October at the convention all of the changes that were being made by North Castle. I was in shock at all the changes and costs that would be incurred. My projected budget was thrown aside as I scrambled to figure out how I was going to proceed. I have done everything possible to keep going (even moving locations to get my overhead down). Most of my members have responded great to all the new classes but the issue is achieving new members when CI just keeps changing our direction and who our “member” actually is! This Jenny Craig thing is just pathetic, it goes against everything we have ever taught. With the confusion of our marketing with CC we have all lost so much. I am out of loans and money and am also looking towards closing my doors. Anyone in California that is on board with a class action please count me in :(

  • I bought my Curves in early 2013, the former owner must have been aware of all the changes that were coming down the pipeline. I followed all CI’s demands to repaint in Curves colors, got rid of the ‘illegal’ equipment (which cost me customers), went to Waco, went to the ‘mentor’ club (all at my expense, of course), took the Cleveland Clinic online course, bought the clothing bundles, bought the tv, the sound bar, the snack & meal bars, the clothing display, the Jillian Michaels Mats .the clothes were not well received at my club…..I managed to sample the bars and make a few sales, but a lot of people in my area are tuned in to veganism, and ‘natural’ products….so the sales were not that great. Jillian was liked by about 50% of the members, but they didn’t want to hear her voice. I paid for my own advertizing, …..paid my dues, plus paid at least 1000$ per month over and above my expenses, took no salary. And now that I advised CI that I am closing, they have demanded 28,600 U.S.$…..I think the Curves concept is great, its just that I never felt I had any real support. Now they have eliminated all the Area Directors, so our contact is through the Help System, with their new Cherwell which often does not work. I loved being there to help the women, in spite of losing a large sum of my retirement fund, it was a painful decision to close. Finally, the building where I was located was sold and the new owners were going to increase the rent by 4 times what I have been paying. I would not have even been able to cover the rent, never mind anything else. I have gone through the hoops of removing signage, giving equipment to 2 other Curves locations and following all other requirements to close. Now waiting to hear what they will say next.

  • Aussie Z

    Good luck to you Linda. We have all been or are going through the same thing.

  • We thought when North Castle Partners took over they would fix things. It briefly looked good with focus groups and all those new Head Office people who turned around major companies like Coke, KFC…, In the end all of us who bought into their program hook line and sinker, got suckered.

    Curves Complete-failure.
    Jillian Michaels – Failure.
    Big merchandising ideas & bars – failure for the most part.
    New equipment-we figured it was what we needed to combat the competition – failure – our old equipment was working just fine.

    JC [Jenny Craig] – we went on the program for 6 months, promoted it and got 3 members to join – our take – $600 in total – and husbands that sign up don’t get us anything. Now they want us to spend up to $49k to get Jenny Craig certified and have our “clients” non-frozen food shipped to them. We tried real hard – trained & trained, did everything we were asked.

    Linda’s entirely correct about product sales, though we carefully chose what we bought and did OK, but purchasing a $500 merchandise displayer was a waste of money (required).

    Jillian Michaels – LOL North Castle Partners is targeting 55+ and they don’t like Jillian Michaels and getting on the floor, however they DO like Body Moves. Our competition simply goes to the nearest Walmart and buys their own Jillian Michaels videos for in their gym to use in their classes. Yes the advertising promo being provided is better than the crap Curves used to insist we use, but honestly you watch their quarterly videos and you get depressed with how little they’re doing to promote “WHY CURVES?”, and have left promotion in our hands and concentrated on building a “better foundation” (website & OS).

    Hell, they want us to PAY for training now. Their trainers tell us to put out 1,000’s of flyers without regard to how much that costs including distribution. Expensive mailouts, put flyers on cars in malls (illegal in all the malls I know of), do stuff that borders on soliciting, and continue using OTHER business’s to promote ours – things that worked in the 90’s and early 2000 (when our gym had over 800 members and no competition).

    Other business’s are struggling to keep themselves alive let alone have us piggy back on theirs! Lead boxes stopped working years ago. Harp at members to get friends to sign up, sure 30+% of our members are BR’s but there’s a limit on that.

    North Castle Partners has done NOTHING to build brand awareness to a public that shops at Dollar Stores & Walmart and doesn’t understand the advantages of what Curves offers. So they have us do what the competition does- free weeks, classes and discounted enrollment fees. You watch their quarterly videos and it’s depressing to hear “we know the bleeding will continue in 2016…”, then they show as shining examples clubs in tiny towns who have next to no competition.

    They say “but women want a ladies only gym” – when in fact in our town we’re one of 5 all offering 30 minute workouts at discounted prices “join now $2.50 per week,” other new gyms $4.99-14.99 per month, new gyms with “100 machines with TV’s”, Zumba studios, Crossfit gyms…

    I’m told by a Jenny Craig manager that North Castle Partners is building the brand so they can sell it off – at this rate I don’t see that happening.

  • I feel for everyone who has owned a Curves Franchisee we were all in awe when we started, and I too have lost my home and all my pension money and live with my poor mom who put in all her money too in a 2 bedroom trailer but I still got my horses. My Curves contract is coming to an end this November after 15 + years owning three which I was able to sell two and kept the one but thanks to a smart lawyer and having the contract before the new company took over I can continue as a private gym as I own the equipment and have a loyal member base and will be able to do new thinks, but I never followed everything Curves wanted but I do have to work longer hours but it is coming around again and my ladies are glad I will not be a Curves so we can do what we really want. So Good Bye Curves and hello new gym. Besides they can’t get blood from a stone. I don’t own anything now except the Equipment. Yahoo

  • LOL, Curves is doing so bad they’ve removed the number of locations from Wikipedia. From 10,000 years ago, Wiki listed it as having 1,035 in May 2016. I’d imagine they’re way under that number by now as us and 3 other locations have closed in the Vancouver, Canada area.

    Since we closed either Goodlife Fitness has rebranded OR they’ve been bought out by Fit4Less. Goodlife – at least in our are had a huge ladies only gym above a Real Canadian Supersstore. The new Fit4less location is now co-ed and charges $4.99 bi weekly. Golds Gym is breaking ground for a new gym (population 76,000) and offering $5 per month for the first 100 memberships, and Hockey’s Trevor Linden with Club 16 and She’s Fit, has captured 10,000 members at $4 per week.

    Without TV advertising Curves will fail a miserable death – not so much a loss for those at head office who deserve a D- grade in promotion, but the real losers are the Franchisees who pour their heart, soul and money into believing North Castle knew what they were doing.

  • I emailed Fortman Law – jef@fortmanlaw.com, about the possibility of another class action lawsuit and got this response after explaining the crap we went through:

    I am sorry to hear this, but as you can imagine, not surprised. This lawsuit is closed to adding new parties. We are working on collecting the judgment for our clients. We have a waitlist and we would be happy to put you on it. We are unsure at this point whether we will go forward with another case.

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