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Business maintains place in top 10 fastest growing companies in Missouri on Inc5000 list.
Fitness Plus continues to find the path to growth through turbulent economic times and expects continued growth ahead.
Wentzville, MO, September 13, 2011: The September, 2011 release of Inc. Magazine's annual Inc500/5000 list features the Wentzville, MO based company, Fitness Plus (FitnessRepairParts.com) at #613 on their annual list of the 5000 fastest growing private companies. While the ranking has slipped a little from last year's #363 ranking, it continues to be ranked among the top 10 fastest growing companies in Missouri and number two on the list among companies in the St. Louis area. Because Fitness Plus has bootstrapped its growth, the availability of lines of credit in a tight lending market has not affected its ability to expand. In the past six years Fitness Plus as grown from a two car garage into a 20,000 sq. ft. facility.
Company leaders John and Jeremy feel that a strong company culture of integrity, hard work, and the constant search for efficiency are what have enabled Fitness Plus to continue growing rapidly though the past few years. The insistence on trimming the fat since the beginning has engrained itself into the Fitness Plus core culture. Every employee works to get as much done in as little time and effort as possible so they can move onto other tasks. This attitude has kept the company lean, debt free, and able to keep pace with the fast-paced growth it has experienced over the last few years.
Fitness Plus began as a St. Louis area independent service provider in the fitness industry, repairing exercise equipment at health clubs, hospitals, hotels, residential homes, and wherever else equipment was located. With John at the helm, it quickly grew into one of the largest and most respected service providers in their area. With a laser focus on providing the highest quality service, Fitness Plus built a large inventory of parts so service technicians could arrive at a customer's location with parts in hand and be able to fix machines on the first service call, reducing customer down-time. Operating the business from his house at the time, it didn't take long for parts to fill John's garage first, and then his basement.
John's son Jeremy joined the business full-time in 1999, working as a service technician and spending time in the evenings doing subcontracted work for area web development companies. In 2003, the pair decided that with the growing business and parts inventory, and Jeremy's knowledge of web development, they should start an ecommerce site to sell parts to the consumer. After 6+ months of heavy development, the site was launched in 2004, and immediately started to show potential. It didn't take long for Fitness Plus to outgrow the garage and basement, and they moved into 5000 sq. ft. in September of 2005. In August of 2009, they added another 3000 sq. ft. temporarily while they looked for a permanent location. In December of 2010 the move to a new 20,000 sq. ft. facility was completed.
Through the addition of the ecommerce side of the business, Fitness Plus has continued to operate the local service side of the business, providing high quality service and repairs to equipment owners in the St. Louis area. Fitness Plus has grown because of the effective use of technology both internally and for the benefit of our customers. More importantly, they have been able to sustain the growth because of the strong work ethic embedded in the company culture and its focus on remaining debt free and highly efficient. Employees are encouraged to operate at peak efficiency in every part of their work. Tools such as healthy competition and a company profit sharing program based partly on the annual expense ratio help to accomplish this.
John Jacobs served in the US Navy from 1977 to 1995, receiving medical retirement for an injury received in service to his country. He retired as an E-7 Chief Petty Officer. The leadership training he received in the Navy has been a vital asset in leading Fitness Plus, and his training as an electronics repair technician on complex equipment such as radar and sonar systems has provided a valuable background in dealing with the ever increasing complexity of today's fitness equipment.
Fitness Plus Equipment Services, Inc. is a family business with a father and son team (John and Jeremy Jacobs respectively) leading it. Fitness Plus provides top quality on-site fitness equipment repair services in the St. Louis area and operates FitnessRepairParts.com, selling replacement parts for exercise equipment.