From founder to ‘zee for new RockBox owner in The Wire
Brothers Mike, left, and Jeff Dudan.
Many franchise founders who’ve just sold their business like to take some time off before jumping into another concept, but for Jeff Dudan, fitness brand RockBox proved too enticing to wait. “I sold AdvantaClean on January 1 and quickly invested in RockBox,” said Dudan, the founder and CEO of restoration services company AdvantaClean, which was acquired by Home Franchise Concepts in January 2019.
“The experience is very sticky and it had a low attrition rate with members,” continued Dudan of RockBox. “It’s a really buttoned up concept with strong unit economics.” Those same attributes that attracted Dudan as an investor on the franchisor side ultimately prompted him to become a franchisee and he, along with his brother and former Carolina Panthers CFO Mike Dudan, signed a deal to open five RockBox Fitness studios in North and South Carolina. “I was a college football player but never got into group fitness. But I tried RockBox and really liked it,” noted Dudan of the concept that combines boxing, kickboxing and functional training in its group workouts.
Based in Huntersville, North Carolina, RockBox has 20 units open; the Dudan brothers’ first studio opened in Greensboro in November. In addition to being a “fantastic way to get in shape,” Dudan said RockBox’s variety of workouts helps differentiate the brand in an increasingly crowded studio fitness space. “We combat boredom—you’re never gonna get the same workout twice,” he said as he also noted the energetic atmosphere. “It’s kind of like a fight club in a nightclub.”
To attract members and stand out from competitors, Dudan said it comes down to “being a little bit better in all areas, the culture, the customer relationship. People will quit a gym, they won’t quit a relationship.”
From a franchisee perspective, Dudan liked that he didn’t have to purchases lots of expensive equipment such as treadmills and rowers, as RockBox mainly uses kettlebells, battle ropes and weight sleds to go along with its boxing equipment. The investment range to open a RockBox Fitness franchise is $230,908 to $363,642.
With its classes, RockBox is “like a fight club in a nightclub,” says franchisee Jeff Dudan.
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