- Aarmy was founded in 2018 by Trey Laird and trainers Akin Akman, Angela Manuel-Davis
- The startup planned its move to online fitness training within a 48-hour period
- They also launched an online apparel store and raised $450,000 through sales
2020 has been a severe challenge for numerous services and platforms. Many startups faced big challenges due to widespread shutdowns and imposed restrictions. Fitness classes and gyms were amongst the worst affected by social distancing restrictions. Aarmy, an in-person fitness class based in New York and Los Angeles, is one of them.
The fitness platform was founded in 2018 by Trey Laird. He partnered with trainers Akin Akman and Angela Manuel-Davis to provide a next-level coaching experience. The startup focuses on training both your mind and your body. They are backed by celebrity investors comprising Chris Paul, Karlie Kloss, and Jay-Z. Some firms like Mousse Partners, Valia Ventures, Pendulum, Wilshire Lane Partners have also invested in the startup. Aarmy’s strategy is as much about mental conditioning as it is about physical fitness. Given the circumstances, mental health and fitness are even more important. Being isolated from one’s social circle, many people struggled with feelings of depression and isolation.
When the pandemic hit, within 48 hours, they shifted their strategy to online training. The company’s founder, Trey Laird, says that they have planned to launch the business on an online platform, but the pandemic just accelerated that idea. Initially, they thought of establishing a few physical locations that would serve as ‘content engines’ but were left with no time to perfect everything. And given that a brand where inspiring mental fitness is as important as inspiring physical fitness, it is the perfect time to move to an online mode.
Aarmy’s new approach
Aarmy’s coaches, according to Manuel-Davis, had to rethink their approach as social distancing norms were to be complied with. Instead, now they have to deliver the energy themselves and not workout as a group. Going online required them to be ‘super intentional’ while planning their sessions as they can’t simply respond to the athletes in the room. Aarmy has also launched an apparel business and sells a variety of gear on its website. According to the company’s reports, online sales have already brought in $450,000.
Aarmy offers a monthly subscription plan costing $35 or an annual subscription of $350. Subscribers will get access to a full digital library comprising live sessions with Aarmy trainers. The online platform will serve 20 new practice sessions every week. The company has announced that its service has ‘thousands’ of paying customers. It also says that its free trials have a conversion rate of over 70% and successfully retained 88% of its earlier subscribers.