Tour de Snap starts new CEO’s tenure at Lift Brands
Weldon Spangler began his post as CEO and president of Lift Brands, parent of Snap Fitness and several other concepts, in mid-September and immediately got busy visiting franchisees, which number more than 1,300.
“We’re in the early stages of what we’re going to call Tour de Snap,” town hall-type meetings. “We just sit there and listen,” he said. “A big theme is communication and making sure franchisees feel listened to. And really making sure we are implementing programs and products….with a lot of discipline.”
Spangler calls himself a long-time operations man, with decades in the foodservice space but now pivoting into fitness. He most recently helmed Papa Murphy’s, which he joined in July 2017 and turned around to a lucrative sale in July 2019.
He’ll have a challenging road ahead. Peter Taunton, the founder of Snap Fitness who later formed Lift Brands and acquired or grew Fitness On Demand, Steele Fitness, Yoga Fit and 9Round, left his company in January 2019.
Snap Fitness, Lift’s largest brand with $457 million in systemwide sales in 2018, stands out in a bad way on the Franchise Times Top 200+ list, with a mere 0.7 percent increase—this in a category where competitors Club Pilates grew 150 percent, Burn Boot Camp grew 105 percent, and Orangetheory Fitness grew 43 percent even as sales crossed the $1 billion mark. 9Round was the bright spot for Lift Brands, up 18.6 percent.
Spangler remains undaunted. “What I want to really do here is work closely with the franchisees, build great relationships and get back to a pace of growth that is exciting and fun and delivers great value,” he said.
Smoothie King promoted Dan Harmon to president and COO, while CDO Kevin King and CMO Rebecca Miller took on new roles.
L&L Hawai’I appointed Elisia Flores as CEO and vice-chair.
Terri Bornhauser joined Camp Transformation Center as franchise sales and development manager.
Bubbakoo’s Burritos added Gus DiGiovanni as VP of operations and development.
The Krystal Co. hired Tim Ward as president and COO and Bruce Vermilyea as CFO.
Blaze Pizza promoted Mandy Shaw to president and CEO.
Delta Restoration Services appointed Chip Baranowski as VP of franchise development.
Office Pride Commercial Cleaning Services appointed Jeff McMullen as CFO.
ZIPS Dry Cleaners named Tina Bagapor-O’Harrow vice president of marketing.
Tropical Smoothie Café welcomed Chief Marketing Officer Mark Montini and Chief Information and Digital Officer Michael Lapid to the team.
Christopher Fuller was named chief communications officer at Inspire Brands.
Chris Cheek is the new chief development officer at Global Franchise Group, franchisor of Great American Cookies, among others, while Annica Conrad, Pam Maxwell and Lisa Cheatham were promoted.
German Doner Kebab appointed Murray Willows to global chief marketing officer.
Juice It Up hired Natalie Eaglin as director of marketing.
Send news of promotions and new hires in franchising to Beth Ewen, email@example.com.