Premium Partners

Kohl's, Planet Fitness Announce Unique Partnership

Jason Scott

In an era of struggling retail, department stores and malls are seeking out new ways to market their products, manage costs and fill mall vacancies.

With that in mind, Menomonee Falls, Wis.-based retailer Kohl’s is reportedly seeking to downsize some of its stores through a new partnership with Planet Fitness — the storefront gym giant which has been opening locations in shopping malls across the country.

The Chicago Tribune reports that Kohl’s will sell or lease space at 10 of its locations to Planet Fitness, with the possibility of that number increasing in the future. Kohl’s hopes that frequent gym-goers will turn to them for fitness-related purchases like wearable health trackers, sneakers and apparel. The companies will cross-promote one another to customers and clients.

Planet Fitness says that the new locations adjacent to Kohl’s will be between 20,000 and 25,000 square feet each.

“We see the Planet Fitness partnership as a real win-win,” Kohl’s CEO Michelle Gass said on an earnings call on Tuesday. “This is going to be a great fit for us and for our customers.”

The partnership serves a business objective for Kohl’s, which is aiming to downsize its physical space, carry less inventory and employ fewer people, according to CNN. For Planet Fitness, the partnership is part of their strategy to grow their presence and double their U.S. footprint to 4,000 locations in coming years.

“Real estate trends appear to remain in our favor,” Planet Fitness CEO Chris Rondeau told business analysts. “Bricks-and-mortar retailers continue to close stores and landlords are increasingly looking to Planet Fitness as key tenants to drive traffic.”

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