Flex Fitness sold, goal to expand product line

Flex Fitness has been sold to a real estate development company in Chicago that sees the company as a "diamond in the rough" with room to grow.
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Flex Fitness has been sold to a real estate development company that sees the company as a "diamond in the rough," President Dan Block told SNEWS.

The deal to sell Flex Equipment Inc. to Paragon Properties Inc. of Chicago was closed March 10. Although the asking price was rumored to be $5 million, Block said the selling price was "quite a bit more than that," but declined to disclose details. The name was changed to Flex Fitness Inc.

"They see us a diamond in the rough," Block said from Flex's Murrietta, Calif., facility. "They think they can kick it to the next level."

The new owner has known the international sales rep for Flex and had discussed a purchase a few years ago, but the owner declined at that time. When the topic came up again, the time was right, Block said.

New owner Paragon wants to let 26-year-old Flex operate as it has, but will increase manufacturing efficiency, marketing reach and product lines, he said, and use its earnings in real estate to invest in Flex to spur its growth.

"We have to change the idea of being the best-kept secret," said Block, who has been president there for a decade and will continue in that position.

Goals for Flex (www.flexfitness.com) include increasing marketing, attending more trade shows to broaden exposure, refining products, expanding internationally, as well as adding a range of slightly lower-cost products to reach into the vertical market.

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