Ben Dunne says ‘paying rent is a mug’s game’ as his gyms go back into profit – – Our News, Your Views

Ben Dunne says ‘paying rent is a mug’s game’ as his gyms go back into profit

Ben Dunne’s gym group returned to profitability last year, posting an operating profit of €3 million.

The company returned to profitability after Mr Dunne closed six of his 12 gyms following the termination of leases on the various premises.

In an interview, Mr Dunne said: “paying rent is a mug’s game. My own business has shrunk dramatically but there was a very good reason for that as we took a view on rents which were crazy,” reports Independent.

Mr Dunne said he had worked hard to turn the business around.

He said: ““I didn’t play golf for three years while all of this was going on. When your business is in trouble something has to give and you can’t play golf three days a week with your business under the cosh – well I couldn’t do it anyway,” reports RTE.

Mr Dunne said the business now has six fitness centers and confirmed he is looking for additional opportunities for further development.

“We have a very strong balance sheet, no borrowings and plenty of cash. We want to expand but not expanding anywhere where we have to pay rent,“ reports Independent.

“Rent can only go up by 2pc and can only drop by 1pc and we have break clauses in our favour,” he said, reports Independent.

Mr Dunne said the company posted an operating profit of €3 million in the 12 months to the end of last May, after posting an operating loss of €3 million the previous year.

“There is no fun in losing money, it really becomes hard work,” he said. “We have had a huge swing-around. Any business that swings around from making big losses to making a profit – you would be very naive to say you are not happy with that,” reports Independent.

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