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Monday
Jan112016

Value Proposition: TRUE Fitness Technology, Inc.

St. Louis–based equipment manufacturer TRUE Fitness Technology, Inc. has made a number of dramatic moves to deal with changing—and challenging—times. 

It’s moved all of its manufacturing overseas, to Taiwan, added strength equipment to its strong cardio base with the introduction of the TRUE Force Line in September, and, in October, acquired Paramount Fitness, the Los Angeles–based manufacturer renowned for its extensive strength offerings. 

In late 2014, TRUE hired Joe Ellis, a 29-year fitness equipment design and fabrication veteran, who came up with a fresh concept, and developed the company’s FORCE strength portfolio. 

The line includes units for ab/back, leg press/calf, leg extension/leg curl, bicep/tricep, lat row, and multi-press, and a functional trainer, a dumbbell rack, an ab bench, and a flat incline bench. 

Then, in August 2015, just as TRUE was preparing to launch FORCE, a bit of luck came into play; Paramount Fitness announced that it was exiting the industry. TRUE CEO Frank Trulaske consummated a deal with Paramount within a matter of months. 

The purchase gave TRUE an instant and impressive stockpile of single, dual, and multi-stack selectorized weight machines, functional trainers, and plate-loaded products, as well as free weight benches, racks, and accessories.

It also picked up an established network of distributors. “There may be some overlap—we’re looking at that now—but we’ll still have plenty of additional reach,” Trulaske said. “It’s important to note, however, that we’ve obtained much more than machines, product lines, tooling, and parts. We’ve acquired an established trademark and brand, which has incredible value, since Paramount has been in business since 1954. It’s possible that we might maintain the brand indefinitely.” 

Although Paramount had a manufacturing facility in California, most of its production had been spread among three locations in China, which, Trulaske says, will remain in place, at least for the near term. All of the existing parts and inventory will be moved to TRUE’s St. Louis warehouse. 

Read the full “Value Proposition: TRUE Fitness Technology, Inc.” article in the January issue of CBI.

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