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SoulCycle rolls out at-home bike nationally, adding new unlimited streaming program and expanded financing options for riders

  • SoulCycle announced on Wednesday that it's at-home stationary bicycle is available nationwide, after first launching in select markets in March. 
  • As part of the rollout, SoulCycle announced a new unlimited streaming membership program available through Variis, an app developed by parent company, Equinox. Riders also now have access to financing options and a monthly payment plan for the $2,500 bicycle. 
  • In addition to the bike's likeness in design to Peloton, SoulCycle's new app and financing programs very closely mirror those of its competitor, in a clear bid for a piece of the growing at-home fitness market. 
  • "There is a cult following with SoulCycle, so I think they will be very successful in bringing people over to their new system," Claude Zdnaow, founder and CEO of Stadiumred Group, told Business Insider. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Fitness buffs struggling to get their hands on a Peloton thanks to extensive back orders and delays amid the pandemic now have another option at their disposal — the SoulCycle at-home bike. 

The bike — which was first announced in March, and available only in select markets — made its national debut on Wednesday, along with a new unlimited streaming membership program and expanded payment options. In addition to the bike's likeness in design to Peloton, SoulCycle's new app and financing programs very closely mirror those of its top competitor. The move is considered a clear bid for a piece of the fast-growing virtual fitness market.  

According to the SoulCycle website and an email sent to riders, Variis SoulCycle's mobile app created by parent company Equinox — will power a "clip in now, pay later" program for the $2,500 bike, allowing riders to split payments for up to 39 months. Peloton's existing financing option permits users to pay for equipment across 49 months using Affirm.

Users will also have the option of either purchasing ad-hoc streaming classes directly from a studio of their choice, or paying $39.99 for unlimited access to live and on-demand classes through Variis.

Read more: After expensing $5,100 in Dior bags, SoulCycle's CEO was suddenly out. Now, an executive exodus and a culture war threaten to send the company off a cliff.

Much like Peloton's membership program, the Variis app includes a variety of off-bike offerings and is available to users that do not own an exercise bike. The app, which is currently available for a 7-day trial period, includes access to classes and programming from other Equinox fitness brands, including Pure Yoga and Precision Run.

SoulCycle did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request to comment on the national rollout and new programming.

SoulCycle's bike marks the latest attempt among Peloton's biggest cycling competitors to replicate its wildly successful model, to varying success. In February, Flywheel — which filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in September — announced that it would permanently shutter all studios and rescinded its at-home bike and membership service after Peloton sued the company for patent infringement, specifically copying its proprietary design and technology. Meanwhile, companies ranging from tech giants like Apple to emerging fitness brands like Obé have launched competitor membership programs this year. 

Now, SoulCycle will also take a stab at capturing a piece of the increasingly lucrative at-home fitness market. And while some experts have previously anticipated the company will continue to face an uphill battle against Peloton, particularly coming to market so late in the pandemic, others say the company's rabid following may help it carve a niche. 

"There is a cult following with SoulCycle, so I think they will be very successful in bringing people over to their new system," Claude Zdnaow, founder and CEO of marketing agency holding company Stadiumred Group, told Business Insider. 

SoulCycle's national rollout also comes on the heels of Peloton announcing a cheaper version of its wildly popular stationary bicycle in September, part of a push from founder and CEO John Foley to democratize the brand and reach new consumers.

"Our goal is to be the go-to at-home fitness solution for as many people as possible," John Foley, Peloton CEO and co-founder, said in a statement after announcing the cheaper bike. "And with these new product launches, we'll be able to offer access to Peloton's best-in-class fitness content at various price points, depending on what consumers are looking for, especially in a world where people are increasingly working out at home."

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