Star Vizn, an online training platform that enables users to refine their craft by watching (and listening to) hall of fame trainers, has launched IOS and Android applications. Offered in a variety of sports/disciplines (basketball, football, boxing, cardio, gym fitness etc.), legends like Jerry Rice, Dominique Wilkins and Roy Jones Jr. lead subscribers through a series of exclusive, behind-the-scenes, 12-week training regimens. JohnWallStreet had a chance to speak with Star Vizn CEO Adam Joosten about the company’s niche, competitors and hardware aspirations.
JWS: Where does Star Vizn fit into this vast world of niche/boutique fitness?
Joosten: Growing up, I had done all the at-home fitness videos; but, I didn’t enjoy doing push-ups and regular workouts. So, I set-out to design fitness programs around your favorite sports and athletes; morphing what somebody is already passionate about, with a fitness program built around it.
JWS: As companies like Orangetheory and Peloton have grown in popularity, some of their instructors have gained cult-like followings; almost becoming fitness influencers. While your product is app based, do you view those companies as competitors?
Joosten: We’re more competitors with companies like that, than we are with your standard Beachbody or Daily Burn; companies that are doing traditional general fitness. They (Orangetheory, Peloton) did a great a great job of making fitness fun, which is what the core emphasis for Star Vizn is. We added the different sports element to interval training.
JWS: I read that Star Vizn has its own line of hardware. Do you see yourselves as a hardware or software company?
Joosten: The hardware is a way to accentuate the different software programs; so, for the audio workouts, having headphones that improve that experience. We want people to be able to stay on Star Vizn and be able to purchase anything that they need, as opposed to buying a fitness program and realizing they need a jump rope and having to go somewhere else. Right now, we’re just selling resistance bands for our fitness programs and headphones for our app; but, over time we’ll definitely have more hardware (hint: a watch is coming).
Howie Long-Short: Star Vizn has raised just $2 million of friends and family money, less than half the amount Orangetheory has raised ($4.8 million). Peloton, a hardware company first, has raised $444.7 million over 7 rounds; but, nearly all that money is privately backed. There is one way to play Peloton. NBCUniversal (CMCSA) was one of 8 investors to have participated in the company’s May ’17 Series E investment round ($325 million).
Fan Marino: Roy Jones Jr.’s boxing program was among the first to launch; smart choice, his promo video has me ready to run through a brick wall. I had the chance to interview Roy about a variety of topics including his thoughts on the Deontay Wilder/Luis Ortiz fight (March 3rd). The interview will run in our Heavyweight World Championship preview edition on March 2nd.
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