By Parsa Saljoughian, Eric Liaw, Army Tunjaicon, and Ajay Vashee
In recent years, combat sports have seen tremendous growth due to the rising popularity of the UFC. But these sports are no longer just battle sports… the unique strength, cardio, and stress-relieving benefits of the movements has turned them a popular fitness option for the masses. FightCamp has quickly emerged as a market leader in this category, starting with an accessible, at-home boxing experience. We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Khalil Zahar, Tommy Duquette, Jerome Rousseau, Patrick Chandler, Alex Marcotte, Alexandre Lapointe and the entire company as part of the latest funding round! Here are a few reasons we invested:
Acceleration of at-home fitness
Usage of connected-fitness products has seen an acceleration during the pandemic, with adoption due to convenience, comfort, and affordability. It used to be difficult to find motivation to workout at home, but connected-fitness products make people feel connected with one another, which drives strong engagement. And not only are people working out at home, they prefer it. According to a recent survey of 3,500 users by The New Consumer, 76% of people tried working out at home during the pandemic, with 66% preferring it. Among millennials, 82% made the switch and 81% like it more. In our view, the pandemic accelerated the inevitable and we expect to see continued growth of at-home fitness products for years to come.
Boxing emerging as a popular fitness option
Boxing is seeing tremendous growth as a popular fitness activity. The total number of boxing classes on ClassPass continues to grow each year, with boxing rising to #7 in the company’s top digital workouts in 2020, behind yoga, HIIT, pilates, bar, dance, and stretching. Boxing also has some unique attributes that make it an attractive category:
Accessibility: Boxing has traditionally been one of the most accessible sports given the limited equipment needed. FightCamp’s price-point follows this, as it is more affordable than other connected-fitness products in the market. The sport is also gender-neutral, skewing slightly female over male, and combines both strength and aerobic elements, making a well-rounded activity for many people.
Gaming: Our view is that the next generation of at-home fitness products will treat workouts as a game. Beyond digital leaderboards, FightCamp is well-positioned to capitalize on game mechanics that are unique to boxing and that are hard to replicate by single-user equipment.
There are close to 12 million boxing and kickboxing participants in classes each year and we believe FightCamp has the potential to even further expand the market size of the sport. According to the company, almost 40% of its users have never boxed before!
Users LOVE FightCamp
FightCamp has a very active and engaging community, which is critical to succeeding as a connected-fitness platform. We reviewed the company’s detailed user studies and were very impressed with the feedback. A few stats that stood out to us: 1) 83% of users tell their friends about FightCamp at least once per week, 2) 95% of users rated the content 4-5 stars, 3) 99% of users who responded with a perspective said that FightCamp has gotten them into better shape. And we’re not surprised to hear this… boxing is the top calorie-burning sport at 800 calories burned per hour (vs 580 for running on a treadmill and 440 for rowing on a machine). We have thrown a few punches ourselves and can see why users, including Mike Tyson and his kids, are addicted.
FightCamp has built a strong business to date, but we are just in round one. We believe that by launching new products, content, and features, FightCamp will become a major household brand. We love backing companies that are creating a healthier population and couldn’t be more excited to be in FightCamp’s corner on the journey ahead.
FightCamp is hiring across virtually every function and organization, so click here to check out open roles.
Parsa Saljoughian, Eric Liaw, Army Tunjaicon, Ajay Vashee are Investors at IVP, a later-stage venture capital firm based in Menlo Park, CA.