Market-leading gym group, Planet Fitness, announced that it has adopted the latest in smart payment collection technologies for enhanced management of membership payments. This has transformed new member enrollment into a remarkably quick and seamless process and improved its collection success rates.
The new technologies are powered by Bitventure, the payment, verification and onboarding solutions specialists. Smart point-of-sale devices (POS), advanced payment apps and state-of-the-art collections software are currently deployed and have exceeded all expectations. Accelerated member-base growth and strengthened revenue streams are showing an immediate return on investment for the gym group.
Bitventure’s solutions were officially rolled out in all Planet Fitness gyms across South Africa at the beginning of September 2020. The solutions include:
The portable Smart POS is a multifunctional device encompassing the features and flexibility of an Android smartphone while doubling as a card payment terminal. Equipped with payment applications such as BitventurePay and DebiCheck, new member onboarding transactions are now 100% friction-free. Members can choose to tap or dip their cards, and all card types are accepted.
The POS devices are digitally integrated into Planet Fitness’s existing member management system, providing automated processes for optimised internal workflows and enhanced member experiences.
Mannee de Wet, managing director at Planet Fitness said: ”We found that Bitventure’s product and service offering was far superior to anything that’s out in the market right now. The major benefit is the integrated point-of-sale. We wanted to integrate payment collection functionalities with our own management system through an API, which Bitventure offered.”
The DebiCheck mandate authentication application facilitates the electronic authentication (card and pin) of new debit order agreements. This feature secures ongoing monthly payments and provides complete transparency. According to PASA, 55 million debit orders are processed monthly in South Africa, 1,5 million of which gets disputed. The DebiCheck system addresses this issue by allowing members to confirm their debit orders through real-time authentication.
To enhance Planet Fitness’s collection success rates and reduce fraud, services such as real-time bank account verification (AVS) and strike date optimisation (SDO) are provided by Bitventure. As reported by the PWC, South Africa has a current economic crime rate of 60%. AVS and SDO services are helping Planet Fitness to address the threat of fraud hands-on. In addition, Bitventure’s provision of real-time financial reporting provides vital insight into Planet Fitness’s business data.
Consumer demand for faster onboarding is increasing – in fact, 70% of South African consumers consider a good customer experience to be a key deciding factor when choosing a service provider to sign up with. According to Bitventure CEO, Junior Biola, new member onboarding done through outdated, complicated, and time-consuming processes are stumbling blocks for modern businesses, regardless of the industry.
“We see our partnership with Planet Fitness as another step towards our effort to reduce risk and increase revenue for businesses. Smart payment solutions offer security, convenience and transparency that is unprecedented,” said Biola.
Planet Fitness and Bitventure are on a journey to enhance business processes and, together, they are setting the benchmark for member onboarding in the South African health and fitness industry. In light of the latter, De Wet said: “The onboarding journey, from when the client walks in, to when the client is signed up, is now an electronic process. It’s just so much more seamless. The new functionalities have created a better experience for gym members.”
For Planet Fitness, choosing smart solutions are genuinely proving to be a smart move.
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