Brand new wellness concept ready to franchise

By Sarah Stowe | 29 Apr 2021 View comments

Elite sports professionals have launched a brand new wellness concept that is ready to franchise.

Former AFL umpire and Collingwood AFLW operations manager Matt James is the brains behind the Recovery Lab, which is a multi-treatment studio designed to boost peak performance in athletes and everyday Australians.

Matt’s brainwave attracted the attention of Daniel Harford, former AFL player and now head coach of Carlton AFLW, who joined the venture as co-founder.

Ex-CEO for St Kilda and former head of the soccer A-League, Archie Fraser, heads up business strategy while former Western Force rugby union player Ben Seymour is also a partner in the business.

The Recovery Lab provides ice baths, compression boots, infrared sauna, massage guns, electrical muscle stimulation and NuCalm, a branded neuro-acoustic relaxation method endorsed by high profile life coach Tony Robbins.

Compression boots at Recovery Lab | Inside Franchise Business

Compression boots at Recovery Lab | Inside Franchise Business

Matt spent a stressful few years at Collingwood, and in his search for a wellness boost program realised there was little in the market that fitted his needs.

He launched Recovery Lab in Windsor, Melbourne, and it’s been operating for two and a half years. 

What’s on offer is a suite of scientifically tested recovery treatments set in a relaxing studio space.

“The whole thing is built around a community experience, it’s about investing in yourself. It’s designed for everyone. It’s for anyone who wants to improve how they feel and perform.”

Recovery Lab operates on a casual and membership basis. Membership accounts for 35 per cent of revenue and there are options for limited and unlimited access to the various treatments, with membership valid across the growing network of studios.

“There’s no doubt we’re first in market and we want to be pre-eminent for wellness,” said Matt.

He has an ambitious goal of opening 200 studios across Australia, with a mix of franchised and corporate ownership.

The model will suit franchisees who are owner occupiers with a passion for health and wellness and perhaps a fitness background, as well as investors looking to run up to five studios all under management. 

“We’ve set the model as a low entry, turnkey is about $150,000,” explained Matt.

He believes a return on investment can be achieved within 12 months.

The first franchised studios will open in a matter of weeks, with Matt partnering with two friends to open a Hampton outlet and Richmond, Victoria and Townsville studios also set for opening by mid-2021.

There are 10 territories already reserved, he said.

This article has been updated regarding Matt James’ position as AFLW operations manager, and 10 territories reserved.