Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct to launch bargain fitness chain

Kasmira Jefford
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BILLIONAIRE Mike Ashley is making a trip to the gym after his sportswear empire unveiled plans yesterday to open 200 budget fitness chains across the UK.

Sports Direct said it would open its first purpose-built gym next month in Aintree on Merseyside next to its new superstore in the area, followed by a second soon after in Keighley, West Yorkshire.

A spokesperson claimed the gyms would dramatically change the market dominated by more costly traditional fitness chains.

Members will pay a £10 fee to join followed by £5 a month to access the gyms, which will have the latest high-tech equipment and offer classes such as spinning.

The move follows its acquisition of 30 gym sites from rival chain LA Fitness earlier this year, which it is in the process of rebranding.

Shares fell 4.5 per cent last night.

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