In a recent interview with Fit Tech, FORTE founder Lauren Foundos discussed her vision for creating the livestream platform, which launched in 2015 and is seeing tremendous growth in today’s stay-at-home COVID world.
The original FORTE model works as a marketplace: the company installs hardware and software into boutique studios, and instructors’ homes, which enables their classes to be streamed live to FORTË’s platform, where they can in turn reach an unlimited number of people. Subscribers to FORTË receive access to a “fully-immersive, interactive, real-time fitness experience with daily content covering a broad range of exercise disciplines”. Classes can be accessed live or on demand. The model requires the studios to cover the costs of hardware installation and software, then revenue is split 50/50 between FORTË and the content creator, based on minutes watched.
The standard FORTE model limits the amount of studios on the platform to avoid overwhelming the user. However, at the onslaught of COVID-19, over 1,000 gyms reached out to them about streaming their classes, which has led to the creation of FORTE’s second business offering, a white-labeled SaaS product that allows gyms to stream their own classes both live and on-demand directly to their own website or app. In this model, the studio pays for the infrastructure, but acquire the users themselves and collect payment directly from them.