24 Hour Fitness reportedly preparing for bankruptcy filing

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Gym chain 24 Hour Fitness Worldwide is reportedly preparing to file for bankruptcy, as retailers and other companies navigate the coronavirus pandemic.

According to The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg, the company is seeking a loan to allow them to keep operating through a restructuring.

The company has more than $1.3 billion in debt after a buyout by AEA Investors and the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, reports Bloomberg.

The company based in San Ramon, Calif., operates more than 430 clubs across the country. The Journal reports 24 Hour Fitness plans to close some gyms permanently.

In a statement obtained by USA TODAY, 24 Hour Fitness says they look forward to continue reopening clubs nationwide as coronavirus restrictions are lifted.

“We are considering a broad range of options to ensure the long term sustainability and success of 24 Hour Fitness and we are not going to comment publicly on our strategic plans,” said the company.

The chain has started reopening clubs shut down because of the pandemic. The gyms will introduce new safety features including touch-free check-ins, increased cleanings and signs promoting social distancing.

The coronavirus pandemic has forced several companies strained prior to the crisis to file for bankruptcy to continue to survive. Retailing giant J.C. Penney, auto rental company Hertz and clothing company Neiman Marcus are among the chains that filed for bankruptcy since the start of the pandemic.

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Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.

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