Gym operator Planet Fitness (NASDAQ: PLNT) stock is in its own bear market trading down (-29%) for the year. The epicenter fitness gym industry has seen a rebound in business with the acceleration of COVID vaccines and boosters. Planet Fitness members grew to all-time highs of 16.21 million members in fiscal Q1 2022 and it opened 37 new gyms. The return to normal is accelerating as February and March 2022 saw 30% of its locations return to 2019 pre-pandemic members levels. There was apparently pent-up demand to experience workouts in a gym. The pandemic caused a lot of competitors to quit or consolidate. Their loss was Planet Fitness’ gain with fewer competitors. The Company completed its acquisition of Sunshine Fitness and launched its High School Summer Pass program that provides access to free workouts over the summer. This is an initiative to grow its footprint among the Gen-Z demographic, which prioritizes an active lifestyle more so than earlier generations. The Company is also entering the New Zealand and Mexico markets. As COVID wanes, the frequency of engagements continues to rise. Prudent investors seeking exposure to the largest player in the fitness gym industry can look for opportunistic pullback levels in shares of Planet Fitness.
Q1 Fiscal 2022 Earnings Release
On May 10, 2022, Planet Fitness released its fiscal first-quarter 2022 results for the quarter ending March 2022. The Company reported an adjusted earnings-per-share (EPS) profit of $0.32 excluding non-recurring items versus consensus analyst estimates for a profit of $0.27, beating estimates by $0.05. Revenues rose 66.8% year-over-year (YOY) to $186.7 million, falling short of analyst estimates for $190.44 million. System-wide same-store sales rose 15.9% as the Company ends the quarter with over 16.2 million members. Planet Fitness CEO Chris Rondeau commented, “ During the first quarter we completed the acquisition of Sunshine Fitness, one of our best-performing franchisees as well as a successful refinancing of a portion of our debt. We are bullish on the future and believe that the acquisition strengthens our powerful business model by enhancing our corporate store team and diversifying the geographic profile of our corporate-owned stores, and the refinancing further supports our business model, by locking in low rates on a significant portion our debt.”
Fiscal Full-Year 2022 Guidance
Planet Fitness issued guidance for fiscal full-year 2022 with EPS ranging from $1.52 to $1.53 versus $1.51 consensus analyst estimates. The Company sees mid 50% top-line growth with revenues expected to come in between $909.8 million to $915.7 million versus $913.84 million consensus analyst estimates.
Conference Call Takeaways
CEO Rondeau highlighted growth metrics for its fiscal first quarter which include record memberships of 16.21 million at the end of the quarter. The Company opened 37 new gyms to add to its total network of 2,291 worldwide clubs. The business was impacted by consumer sentiment around COVID-19. The Omicron surge made January a soft month for membership but rebounded as it waned. Net membership growth in February and March outpaced pre-pandemic levels of 2019. At the end of the quarter, 30% of its gyms reached their pre-pandemic membership levels. He noticed that customers are working out more frequently, especially in regions that were hardest hit by the pandemic including the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, and the West. Gen-Z and millennials hit post-pandemic frequency highs and baby boomers had their highest usage in March. CEO Rondeau noted that the basic membership is just $10, but 60% of new members tend to opt for the premium Black Card membership which includes access to over 400 clubs, digital content, and expanding Perks program. The Company will be raising the price to $24.99 for all new joins moving forward.
PLNT Opportunistic Pullback Levels
Using the rifle charts on the weekly and daily time frames provides a precise view of the landscape for PLNT stock. The weekly rifle chart formed an inverse pup breakdown that collapsed shares through the weekly 200-period moving average (MA) and weekly lower Bollinger Bands (BBs) at $66.28 as it attempts to make a near-term bottom near the $64.45 Fibonacci (fib) level. The weekly stochastic formed a mini inverse pup that is crossing below the 20-band. The weekly market structure low (MSL) buy triggered a breakout through $57.60. The daily rifle chart formed an inverse pup breakdown with a falling 5-period MA at $69.21 followed by $72.46. The daily lower BBs sits at $60.23. The daily 50-period MA resistance sits at $80.31, and the daily 200-period MA sits at $83.02. The daily upper BBs sits near the $88.77 fib. The daily stochastic crossed back down through the 20-band as momentum turns downward again. The daily MSL triggers a breakout through $72.18. Prudent investors can watch for opportunistic pullback levels at the $64.45 fib, $59.53 fib, $57.84 fib, $55.02 fib, $53.91 fib, $51.84 fib, $49.42 fib, and the $45.87 fib level. Upside trajectories range from the $73.74 fib up to the $88.77 fib level.