Athlo, an app enabling consumers to sell unwanted classes has soft-launched in the UK. The platform was founded by Matthew Mansell to help consumers avoid wasting unwanted class slots and to enable operators to take an additional slice of revenue from classes they've already sold.
Initially, Athlo’s registered users are only able to purchase unwanted classes from London boutiques – already on board are operators such as BXR, More Yoga, Milo and the Bull and the Altitude Training Centre – but as the app grows, other services and geographies will come on stream.
Classes are promoted for sale via the app, with the proceeds being split between the operator, the consumer who originally bought the class and Athlo. The split is determined by an algorithm based on pre-agreed fixed rates.
The company intends to also target larger gym operators and an upcoming evolution of the app will see gym memberships also being resold on the same basis, effectively enabling operators to 'sell' the same membership twice – once to the original holder of the membership and again to another user in exchange for a cut of the fee paid.
Operators will choose how memberships are resold, so resale could be on a temporary basis for a set number of days, weeks or months, or it could be permanent.
The permanent membership transfer option would see a lower yield for the operator than if the purchaser took out new membership, but would turn gym leavers into an unpaid sales force, enabling operators to retain some of the value of the membership.
Operators will also be able to control which of their membership types includes the power to re-sell membership, enabling them to make this a benefit for more expensive membership packages, for example.
Under membership resale agreements, the revenues generated will be split between the member, the operator and Athlo.
Athlo will validate the temporary or permanent transfer of a membership via an API call on the operator's membership database.
“One of the main reasons people give up their gym membership is because they're not using it enough and don’t see it as value for money,” said Mansell. “We're building a platform which will give members the flexibility to get the most out of their membership and ultimately helps operators to better retain their members and gain a secondary revenue stream.
“From an operator’s perspective, their members list their membership or classes for resale and Athlo then handles the entire process,” explains Mansell. “Transactions show in the operators’ booking system, while they'll also be provided with their own Athlo dashboard, where they can review and manage all Athlo transactions.”
“Athlo’s offering will give existing members more freedom to use their membership in a way that suits their lifestyle," said Alex Nicholl, director at BXR – an early adopter of Athlo. "From early conversations with the Athlo team we could really see how the platform would add value."
If larger operators are to adopt Athlo, it would require many of them to change their terms and conditions, which currently prohibit more than one person from using a membership and the transfer of memberships.