Fit for the future!
Steve Taylor and Dave Courteen have been business partners for more than fifteen years. During that period they built Fitness Express into a significant force in fitness centre management. In 2000 they sold the business to Crown plc at a multi-million pound valuation. Earlier this year they re-acquired it, and are set on the expansion trail again. This is what Steve has to say about the Cranfield experience:
" Fitness Express has benefited significantly from the `Cranfield experience` since our company was founded in 1987. In the late 1980s, I attended the Graduate Enterprise Programme whilst my co-founder, Dave Courteen, attended Firmstart which helped us avoid the major pitfalls typically faced by early stage businesses.
“We then both attended the Business Growth and Development Programme (BGP) in 1997. It proved invaluable in further developing both ourselves and our senior management team. It also helped in ensuring we took a disciplined approach when we subsequently sold Fitness Express four years later. What we both learnt on BGP helped us achieve the selling price we were looking for."
During 2004 Dave and Steve negotiated the buy-back of Fitness Express and resumed ownership of the business in 2005.