Weil advises Oaktree on the sale of LifeFit Group to Waterland

Photo: Manuel-Peter Fringer, Part­ner at WEIL in Munich
11. June 2024

Munich — Inter­na­tio­nal law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP has advi­sed funds advi­sed and mana­ged by Oakt­ree Capi­tal Manage­ment, L.P. (“Oakt­ree”) on the sale of its invest­ment in Life­Fit Group to Water­land Private Equity Invest­ments (“Water­land”).

As the previous majo­rity share­hol­der, Oakt­ree is selling its shares in the Life­Fit Group, a leading German fitness and health plat­form with more than 140 studios, inclu­ding the Fitness­First, Elbgym, Barry’s and Club Pila­tes brands. The acqui­si­tion by the buyer Water­land is expec­ted to be comple­ted in the second half of 2024.

The tran­sac­tion is expec­ted to be comple­ted in the second half of 2024. The Life­Fit Group is thus conti­nuing to pursue the growth course it has been on since its foun­da­tion in 2019, which is to be inten­si­fied with the new inves­tor Water­land. Since 2019, the Group’s gym port­fo­lio has grown from 50 to more than 140 clubs in 2024, where more than 400,000 people train, making Life­Fit one of the leading health and fitness plat­forms in Germany.

Advi­sor Oakt­ree: WEIL

The inter­na­tio­nal Weil tran­sac­tion team was led by Munich-based private equity part­ner Manuel-Peter Fringer and compri­sed part­ner Tobias Geer­ling (tax, Munich), part­ner Neil Rigby (regu­la­tory, London), coun­sel Thomas Zimmer­mann (finance, Munich), Florian Wessel (private equity, Munich), Dr. Konstan­tin Hoppe (IP, Munich), Stef­fen Giolda (anti­trust, Munich), as well as asso­cia­tes Amelie Zabel, David Fier, Dr. Chris­to­pher Schlet­ter and Lucas Otto­witz (all private equity, Munich), Jannik Dutt­lin­ger (data protec­tion law, Frank­furt), Alex­an­der Reich, Daniel Reich (both tax law, Frank­furt), Hans-Chris­­tian Mick (finance, Frank­furt), Silvia Lengauer (finance, Munich), Fabian Kraupe, Benja­min Köpple (both employ­ment law, Munich) and Daniel Mati­je­vic (litigation/IP, Munich).

About Weil

Weil, Gotshal & Manges is an inter­na­tio­nal law firm with more than 1,100 lawy­ers. Weil has offices in New York, Boston, Brussels, Dallas, Frank­furt, Hong Kong, Hous­ton, London, Miami, Munich, Paris, Shang­hai, Washing­ton, D.C. and Sili­con Valley. In Germany, the firm has two offices and around 60 lawyers/tax advi­sors in Frank­furt and Munich. The focus here is on provi­ding specia­li­zed advice to natio­nal and inter­na­tio­nal clients on cross-border private equity and M&A tran­sac­tions, high-profile liti­ga­tion manda­tes, complex restruc­tu­rings and finan­cings as well as tax struc­tu­ring.

About Water­land

Foun­ded in 1999, the Euro­pean asso­cia­ted company Water­land opera­tes at 13 loca­ti­ons in eleven count­ries and has exten­sive expe­ri­ence in the fitness and health indus­try. From 2005 to 2013, Water­land inves­ted in the Dutch Health City­­/­­Ba­­sic-Fit Group and deve­lo­ped it into the second-largest gym opera­tor in Europe. Water­land also held a majo­rity stake in the Exer­cite Group (Hanse­fit), which was deve­lo­ped into one of the largest specia­lists for corpo­rate health and well­ness offe­rings in Germany and the Nether­lands and was ulti­m­ately acqui­red by the Epassi Group in Febru­ary 2024. Water­land also curr­ently holds a stake in the German fitness chain FIT/One.

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