Life Time Fitness, Inc. ( LTM )

Q2 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

July 22, 2010 10:00 am ET

Executives

Ken Cooper – VP, Finance

Bahram Akradi – Chairman, President and CEO

Mike Robinson – EVP and CFO

Analysts

Ed Aaron – RBC Capital Markets

Jaison Blair – Rochdale Securities

Scott Hamann – KeyBanc Capital

Tony Gikas – Piper Jaffray

Brent Rystrom – Feltl

Bakley Smith – Jefferies & Company

Paul Swensen [ph] – Morningstar, Inc.

Greg McKinley – Dougherty & Company

Presentation

Operator

Good day ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the second quarter 2010 Life Time earnings conference call. My name is Kiano and I’ll be your operator for today’s call. At this time, all participants are in a listen only mode. Later, we will conduct a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions) I would now like to turn the conference over to your host for today, Mr. Ken Cooper, Vice President of Finance. You may proceed.

Ken Cooper

Thanks Kiano. Good morning and thank you for joining us on today’s conference call to discuss the second quarter 2010 financial results for Life Time Fitness. We issued our earnings press release this morning. If you did not obtain a copy you may access it at our website, which is lifetimefitness.com. Concurrent with the issuance of our second quarter results, we have filed a Form 8-K with the SEC, which also includes the press release.

On today’s call Bahram Akradi, our Chairman and CEO will discuss key highlights from our second quarter and our operations. Following that, Mike Robinson, our CFO will review our financial highlights. Once we have completed our prepared remarks, we will answer your questions until 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time.

At that point in the call, Kiano will provide instructions on how to ask a question. I will close with a tentative date of our third quarter 2010 earnings call. Finally, a replay of this teleconference will be available on our website at approximately 01:00 PM Eastern Time today.

Today’s conference call contains forward-looking statements and future results could differ materially from those statements made. Actual results maybe affected by many factors, including the risks and uncertainties identified in our SEC filings.

Certain information in our earnings release and information disclosed on this call constitute non-GAAP financial measures, including EBITDA and free cash flow. We’ve included reconciliations of the differences between GAAP and non-GAAP measures in our earnings release and our Form 8-K. Other required information about our non-GAAP data is included in our Form 8-K.

With that, let me turn the call over to Bahram Akradi. Bahram?

Bahram Akradi

Thanks, Ken. As I said at the beginning of the year, our company stands poised to win in the challenging environment and as way through the year we are winning. At the beginning of the year, we set a stretch goal of getting our mature clubs to positive comps by end of the second quarter. And we were able to accomplish this significant milestone. This was a quarter earlier than our normal projection and a great sign that our membership base is reacting favorably to our initiatives.

We also saw another great quarter on retention improvement. Improving these – this metric is a still the single most important initiative we have in place today. Our entire company continues to rally around keeping our current members engaged and active. There are ways to go until we achieve our 36% trailing twelve month attrition rate goal, but we are working relentlessly to accomplish specific task.

The same-store sales and retention metrics were good, despite continued headwinds. A strong parameter of headwinds for our business is the ability or lack there off to raise our enrollment fee. Through the past six months and consistent with last year, we have maneuvered hut with our enrollment fee in order to gain the membership accounts necessary to achieve our results.

Lack of ability to increase our enrollment fee is a clear indication of continued headwinds for our business. We believe there is a strong correlation to where our enrollment fees are and the health of consumer. As the consumer environment gets better and/or we continue to get more traction from our initiatives, we will gain the ability to increase our enrollment fees at that time. We’ve forecast a slow recovery for our average enrollment fee over the next several years.

As it relates to the next few years, I would like to provide you with an update on our growth expectation. Life Time Fitness is a healthy way of life growth company. Although, we slowed down our expansion over the last two years because of the economy and the tight cancel [ph] markets, we have still grown at a reasonable rate, in fact over 8% top-line growth in 2009 and again this quarter. We have achieved this growth, while simultaneously repositioning the company to win in a longer term challenging economic environment. This postioning continues today, as we optimize our balance sheet and continue to get operating re metrics back to normalized level.

Our growth ambition can be broken down into long-term beyond 18 months and short-term over the next 12 to 18 months. Our long-term goal is to grow our top-line at least low double-digits per year and leverage that growth with higher net income and EPS growth.

We expect this growth will come from all aspects of our healthy way of life businesses and the strong brand equity. What we have done over the past few months is a good example of our approach. We have recently expanded the number of our athletic events, including notably the largest Triathlon United States, the Chicago Triathlon.

We have added athlon yoga, a yoga certification training program to our yoga offerings. And we completed a process of 50,000 square feet health club in Kingwood, Texas, which is near our Lake Houston Location.

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