For the first time in 11 years, CrossFit is increasing its annual affiliation fee. In an email sent to affiliate owners this afternoon (you can read that below), CrossFit’s CEO Don Faul addressed the upcoming price increase and explained how CrossFit intends to deliver additional value with the increased revenue.
For most affiliates, the affiliate fee will increase to $4,500, a 50% increase over the current $3,000 fee. Some affiliates, namely in parts of Africa and South America, will see their affiliate fees decrease. In an interview with Don Faul, he expanded on the intent behind changes to the affiliate fees, “The goal is create the conditions through pricing that can support a healthy, flourishing community. In some cases that means lowering the price and for others that meant raising it.”
As part of this price increase (for most), CrossFit will begin offering monthly payment options with no additional fees with the 2024 affiliate fee renewal. This is intended to alleviate the one-time fee and spread it out over 12 months, thereby providing more flexibility and consistent cash flow.
The changes to the affiliate fees take effect on January 1, 2024. CrossFit is, however, providing a one-time $500 credit to apply toward a Level 1 or Level 2 Certificate Course, or an Online Level 1 for the affiliate owner or a coach on staff.
This $500 credit will come in handy for many as all affiliate owners will be required to get their L2 certification within 12 months following their 2024 affiliate renewal. According to Faul, approximately 50% of current affiliate owners already have their L2. “The L1 is incredible, but it’s the start of your journey and we see affiliates that make education a priority get that to trickle down to their members. It sets a tone and culture within their Box that generally delivers a better experience for their members,” said Faul.
While the affiliate owners will be take on the increased cost of affiliate fees and the L2 certification requirement, Don Faul acknowledged that CrossFit has a responsibility to support its affiliate owners. But to do that, CrossFit needs the capital to make the type of investments required to launch growth initiatives and better support affiliates in the long-run. According to Faul, “As recent as 2022, CrossFit HQ was breakeven. That doesn’t put us in a position to make the type of investments we need to for growth and affiliate support.”
So with the added revenue coming in from higher affiliate fees in 2024, Faul has committed to the following in 2024 – growth, quality and tools and support.
Faul said CrossFit will continue and expand its investment in technology, personnel and marketing to help get new members through the front door of affiliates. He also believes that raising the bar on education, through the new L2 requirement, will create better gyms, drive word-of-mouth recommendations and ultimately drive growth in memberships at those affiliates.
And from a tools and support standpoint, CrossFit will continue to offer and invest into CAP (CrossFit Affiliate Programming) as part of the affiliation fee as well as expanding field support, business coaching and regional summits.
Faul expects that some CrossFit affiliates won’t be able to or will be unwilling to invest following the price increase. His hope is that CrossFit can support those affiliates through this change, but understands that some will not choose to renew. And so while retention has improved over the past year, from 12% churn rate in 2022 to the lowest rate they have seen at 6%, Faul recognizes that the churn rate will likely creep up a bit in 2024.
“The market rewards excellence and we will see some gyms choose to not renew who don’t want to make the investment. Our hope is that we can support those who want to invest. We believe that if we raise the bar of quality collectively, that is the right decision,” said Faul.
You can read to the full letter sent to affiliates below.
Thank you for being part of the CrossFit affiliate community. Affiliates are—and always will be—the lifeblood of CrossFit, and we have immense gratitude for your continued commitment.
We previously shared our goal of growing to 30 million members by 2030. To do that, we need to innovate and reinvest in the business to ensure we’re attracting more people to CrossFit, driving a greater number of leads into your gyms, and protecting and preserving the brand in multiple ways.
Despite inflation and higher costs — which have risen by an average of 74% — CrossFit has not raised prices for 11 years. In order to sustain a healthy business and invest in resources to achieve our goals, we need to increase our affiliation fee in the new year.
We did not take the idea of an increase lightly. Our decision reflects a tremendous amount of thought and research, centered on understanding and serving your needs while allowing for reinvestment of fees back into the ecosystem. We remain committed to making sure you have the support, education, and tools you need to build a strong and sustainable business while ensuring you continue to have the flexibility and freedom to run your affiliate in a way that best serves your community.
This increase will allow us to continue to invest in you. Over the coming months, you’ll hear a lot more from us about our commitment and plans to deliver additional value. In 2024, expect to see us focus on three key areas:
Growth. In order to get new members through your front door, we are investing heavily in technology, personnel, and marketing to help inform brand perception, storytelling, campaigns, and web/mobile enhancements. These improvements will help you build a strong, sustainable business.
Quality. We are raising our standard for owners and coaches in 2024, which will translate to a better member experience. As part of your renewal in 2024, you’ll receive a one-time $500 credit to apply toward a Level 1 or Level 2 Certificate Course, or an Online Level 1 for yourself or a coach on your staff. Starting in 2024, all affiliate owners — existing and new — will have 12 months following their renewal signing to enroll in their L2 certification.
Tools and support. In today’s market, we need to do more to educate, coach, and provide business support tools. We will continue to offer and invest into CAP as part of your affiliation fee. We will also continue to expand the reach and impact of our field support, business coaching, regional summits, and other opportunities to learn and share success stories. And new for 2024, we will offer monthly payment options with no additional fees with your new contract. This flexibility will ensure you have more control over your budget and cash flow.
We know that many of you have questions and concerns, so we’ve created an FAQ page and will be hosting town halls on 12/1 and 12/4. More information will also be forthcoming with your license renewal notifications.
Until then, thank you for your dedication to CrossFit. Our community of 13,000 affiliates is fundamental to building a strong and enduring brand globally, and we’re looking forward to working collaboratively to achieve even more success in 2024 and beyond.