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Health and wellness will no longer be a luxury post COVID-19: WW International CEO

·Anchor, Editor-at-Large
·2-min read
In this article:
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If there is any positive coming out of the depths of the coronavirus pandemic, it’s likely to be greater attention to one’s health and wellness.

Whether that’s through more exercise via an app, a Peloton bike, a reopened Planet Fitness or just paying closer attention to eating habits, everything is on the table for people in an effort to stay healthier.

“Coming out of this, I do believe that health and wellness is not going to be a luxury going forward. It’s going to be a necessity as people are apprise [of] how they’re going to live and how they’re going to spend,” said WW International (otherwise known as Weight Watchers) CEO Mindy Grossman on Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade. “So we’re really seeing a switch to I have to be healthy. It’s not just I have to lose weight. I think that’s really important.”

Grossman is preparing WW for that heightened focus on healthy.

WW International CEO Mindy Grossman participates in the Yahoo Finance All Markets Summit at Union West on Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
WW International CEO Mindy Grossman participates in the Yahoo Finance All Markets Summit at Union West on Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

WW has added fitness classes into its app through a partnership with Fit On. In coming weeks it will launch sleep tracking on the app as well. It also plans to expand its partnership with ClassPass. Meetings — a trademark for the WW brand often done in studios (they are currently closed) — have been moved into a virtual setting so members could continue to get support.

Shares of WW popped about 12% on Wednesday following a better than expected first quarter. In large part that reflects the efforts by Grossman and her team to move the business into a virtual setting and the lingering benefits of a promotional tour by brand ambassador/shareholder Oprah Winfrey.

WW also teased a new $100 million cost savings plan.

Adjusted earnings tallied 4 cents a share versus Wall Street forecasts for 23 cents a share. The company ended the quarter with 5 million subscribers, up 9% year-over-year.

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and co-anchor of The First Trade at Yahoo Finance. Follow Sozzi on Twitter @BrianSozzi and on LinkedIn.

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