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Related Co is Now Toxic to Equinox, SoulCycle Brands




The Trump Boycotts Pose a Grave Danger to the Equinox and SoulCycle Businesses

Via New York Magazine’s The Intelligencer

Equinox and SoulCycle have claimed in recent days that Ross is just a “passive investor” in their businesses, which is false. It is true that Related is a minority investor in Equinox, which in turn owns SoulCycle. (As Dan Primack of Axios has explained, Related used to own a majority of Equinox but has sold stakes to other investors over the years, diluting its own position.) It’s also true that Ross owns just 60 percent of Related. So a majority of Equinox’s and SoulCycle’s profits are not accruing to Ross personally.

But “minority” ownership does not equal “passive” ownership, and the siting decisions for Equinox gyms and SoulCycle studios are heavily tied up in Related’s broader development strategy. Related is the landlord for many Equinox and SoulCycle locations, especially in New York, because Related seeks to place them where they will enhance the value of Related’s residential and office developments. This includes Related’s Hudson Yards megadevelopment on the West Side of Manhattan, which contains a flagship Equinox gym and the first-ever Equinox-branded hotel in addition to about a thousand apartments, millions of square feet of office space, and, of course, a SoulCycle studio.

Here’s how Related explained its decision take control of Equinox all the way back in 2005:

“Related will secure a well known brand as a quality anchor tenant for key current and future developments. This will also help Related to enhance the quality of its amenities and facilities available to residents. Equinox will leverage Related’s real estate expertise and relationships to more efficiently secure sites, reducing its site identification and club development costs.”

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