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About GNC Holdings, Inc.

Vitamins and supplements are part of the daily regimen at GNC Holdings. GNC Holdings operates the world's leading nutritional-supplements retail chain devoted to items such as vitamins, supplements, minerals, and dietary products. The firm manufactures private-label products for Rite Aid, Sam's Club, and PetSmart. Altogether, GNC boasts more than 8,000 stores, including some 3,200 company-owned stores in the US, Canada, and Puerto Rico; 1,000 franchised stores in the US; nearly 2,000 franchised stores internationally in about 50 countries; and more than 2,000 store-within-a-store sites in Rite Aid locations. The vast majority of its sales comes from US.

Operations

GNC operates through three segments: the US and Canada segment, Manufacturing/Wholesale segment, and International segment.

GNC’s US and Canada segment generates revenues primarily from the sale of products to customers at company-owned stores in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, through product sales to domestic franchisees, royalties on domestic franchise retail sales, franchise fees, and through GNC.com and its market place on Amazon. The segment accounts for about 85% of company’s total revenue.

The Manufacturing/Wholesale segment (about 10% of total revenue) includes manufacturing operations in South Carolina and its wholesale partner relationships. Its manufacturing operations supply its US and Canada and International segments with proprietary product and also manufactures products for other third parties.

The International segment generates revenue primarily from its international franchisees through product sales, royalties and franchise fees, and its China and Ireland operations. The segment accounts for nearly 10% of total revenue. 

Geographic Reach

Headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, GNC has offices in Boston, Massachusetts; Tustin, California; Mississauga, Ontario; Dublin, Ireland; and Shanghai, China. Its distribution centers are located in South Carolina, Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Arizona. Its Nutra Manufacturing is located in Greenville, South Carolina. California, Florida, New York, Pennsylvania, and Texas account for about a third of GNC’s company-owned stores. 

GNC rings up to some 95% of its sales in the US. GNC also does business in about 50 other countries. Mexico, South Africa, South Korea, and Chile are home to more than 55% of GNC's approximately 1,950 international franchise stores. GNC has more than 215 company-owned stores in Canada.

Sales and Marketing

GNC’s products are delivered to retail stores, wholesale distributors, international franchisees, and directly to customers who purchase through online, via a third party transportation network, primarily through company’s distribution centers. GNC’s wholesale partners include Rite Aid, PetSmart and Sam’s Club.

GNC’s advertising expense were $95.6 million, $104.5 million, and $89.8 million for the years 2018, 2017, and 2016, respectively.

Financial Performance

GNC Holdings has seen revenue growth stall in recent years, as competition has ramped up in the industry. Its annual revenues have fallen more than 11% since 2014.

Revenue dropped to $2.3 billion in 2018, an approximately 5% decrease from the year prior. The decrease was driven by the sale of its Lucky Vitamin e-commerce business and lower sales associated with store closures at the end of their lease term.

Net income was $70 million in 2018, an increase from net loss of $150 million in fiscal year 2017. Selling, general and administrative expenses decreased slightly in 2018 to $620.9 million, due in part to the sale of Lucky Vitamin and lower marketing expenses.

Cash at the end of 2018 was $67.2 million. Cash provided by operating activities was $95.9 million in 2018, while investing activities used $16.5 million. Financing activities used another $75.8 million.

Strategy

Facing stiff competition in the industry, GNC Holdings is looking toward new opportunities for growth while continuing to focus on cost savings. 

GNC is investing in its omnichannel capabilities to keep pace with changing customer expectations and new developments by competitors. Its omnichannel initiatives include offering online and in-store subscription services, offering customers the option of picking up online purchases in store, and shipping products purchased via e-commerce directly from stores. 

The company is testing a new experiential store location designed to engage customers. At the new location, GNC customers can order smoothies and snacks at the GNC Smoothie Lab, receive a body composition analysis, and schedule a free dietitian consultation. The company is also adding a variety of new products to its stores and online, including topical cream products containing cannabidiol (CBD). 

GNC struck up several new deals and partnerships, including a $300 million investment by Harbin to become the company's largest stockholder. The Harbin deal also includes a joint venture with Harbin in China. Its IVC (International Vitamin Company) deal will allow IVC to own GNC's manufacturing arm by 2023 through a joint venture. The company expects the deal will give it additional resources to put toward product development and brand expansion.

Following a review of its portfolio, the company is closing between 700 to 900 corporate stores in the US and Canada in the next three years as part of its store optimization plan. GNC has identified other stores in which it is considering alternatives such as seeking lower rent or a shorter lease term. The company has also improved its balance sheet by retiring over $350 million in debt.

Company Background

GNC Holdings was founded as a health food store in Pittsburgh in 1935.

GNC Holdings, Inc.

300 6TH AVE
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-2528
Phone: 1 (412) 288-4600

Stats

Employer Type: Publicly Owned
Stock Symbol: GNC
Stock Exchange: , NYSE
EVP Operations: Joseph C. Gorman
CEO: Kenneth A. Martindale
Chairman: Robert F. Moran
Employees (This Location): 66
Employees (All Locations): 15,500

Major Office Locations

Pittsburgh, PA

Other Locations

Chicago, IL
Edwardsville, IL
Machesney Park, IL
Waukegan, IL
Apple Valley, MN
Forest Lake, MN
Maryland Heights, MO
Brooklyn, NY
Walterboro, SC
Franklin, TN
Allen, TX
Stafford, VA
Madison, WI
Oshawa, Canada
Sudbury, Canada