Tonal is a smart home gym that uses artificial intelligence and expert-led coaching to provide strength training.
It manufactures and provides Tonal, fitness training equipment. The equipment is installed on walls and offers personalized workouts through it. It also provides workout plans, such as build muscles, balancing strength, and athletic. Performance-based on individual requirements. It also offers live-recorded classes by coaches.
Tonal is unique in this field for its focus on weight training instead of cardio. Think of the machine like a slimmer, low-profile Bowflex that mounts flush against the wall rather than taking up an entire corner of your room. With arms that can be adjusted and folded away, it’s also a bit less likely to end up as an expensive coat rack. :- Verge
- Founders —Aly Orady
- Anticipated ticker: $TONL or $TONA
- Founded Date — 2015 (HQ, SF, CA)
- Also Known As: Tonal Systems
- The LR was closed in March ' 21
After struggling with his weight since childhood, Tonal founder Aly Orady finally discovered a solution that worked. Kind of. By strength training consistently for many months, he was able to lose 70 pounds. The problem was this schedule wasn’t sustainable. Just getting to the gym ate up a sizable chunk of his day. And once there, he constantly found himself waiting around for machines and equipment.
Aly refused to believe he had to sacrifice his life to keep his body. So when he couldn’t find a better solution, he invented one. By using electromagnetics to create electronic resistance he found (and patented) a way to replace all the equipment he used in the weight room with a single digital weight machine.
And Aly didn’t stop there. Digital weight unlocked endless possibilities. A machine that knew what you were doing, could respond if programmed. It could actually coach the people using it! This was where the idea for Tonal really took off. Aly envisioned a connected system that assessed what you needed to do, told you how to do it, and let you do it from home, in record time. And then he assembled a team to create it.
Number of employees ~300
Total Raised: $450M + secure transaction
- Seed — 2016 at val. $7.9M, $0.35 pps
- Series A — 2017 at val. $25M, $0.62 pps
- Series B — 2018 at val. $98.30M, $1.12 pps
- Series C — 2020 at val. $185M, $1.59 pps (source)
- Series D — 2020 at val. $560M, $4.5 pps (source)
- Series E — 2021 at val. $1.6B, $6.20 pps (source)
Investors: Dragoneer Investment Group, Drew Brees, Sue Bird, Maria Sharapova, Cobalt Capital, Mike Tyson, Sapphire Sport, Shasta Ventures, Mayfield Fund and etc.
The global sports equipment market size was estimated at USD 71.85 billion in 2019 and is expected to reach USD 74.17 billion in 2020 (source)
How it works?
At $2,995 plus a monthly subscription cost, Tonal’s pitch is that it will replace a personal trainer at the gym by putting an on-demand one inside your home.
The Tonal is a wall-mounted machine that has two adjustable arms; you can move them up and down and angle them for various push or pull exercises. The grips can also be swapped out for either two handles, a bar, or a rope. Some of these handles include an on / off button that allows you to get into position before starting the weight. The starter set also comes with a bench and a floor mat.
Inside the Tonal, electromagnets create resistance so that you can push and pull up to a maximum of 200 pounds combined, or 100 pounds per arm. (That might not be enough for some people, but it should suit most beginner to intermediate levels. If you want more resistance, you’ll have to wear your own wrist weights.) The center features a touchscreen that includes a roster of classes to suit your goals, whether it’s to bulk up in muscle or get toned and lean.
When you start up Tonal, you’ll need to perform a strength test to measure just how much weight you can handle. Based on the speed and force you’re able to lift, Tonal will auto-adjust the resistance and recommend weights for each program. You can also select your goals and difficulty levels for suggestions on the best classes to take. The machine keeps a “strength score” that shows you how much more you’ve been lifting over time.
Tonal currently offers a handful of coaches with different personalities, but most of their classes are structured the same way: the instructors start with some small talk then lead you through two to three sets of three to four exercises, which includes a warm-up and cool down. Most workouts last anywhere between 25 and 45 minutes, and you can also select a freestyle mode to perform specific exercises if you want to craft your own sets. Currently, the machine supports hundreds of different movements targeting all areas of the body, from arms and abs to legs and shoulders.
2020 was a year of explosive growth for Tonal, with sales growing more than 8x and best-in-class member engagement and retention rates. Tonal also recently announced a nationwide partnership with Nordstrom across 40 locations, expanding its retail footprint to 60 points of distribution. With more than 90 percent market share in the connected strength training segment, and a Net Promoter Score consistently above 80, Tonal continues to broaden its lead in the category.
From January through November of 2020, approximately 2.5 billion health and fitness apps were downloaded worldwide, according to data from Sensor Tower — a 47 percent jump from the same period in 2019.
The majority of Tonal’s customers are between 30 and 55 years old and live in, or adjacent to, the top 10 major metro U.S. markets.
Tonal has recently made a number of key executive hires that include:
- Chief Operations Officer Shannon Crespin — a former Johnson & Johnson executive, Ms. Crespin will be responsible for leading Tonal through scaling and achieving operational excellence.
- Chief Strategy Officer Gregory de Gunzburg — former Head of Corporate Strategy and Development for NBCUniversal, where he led the launch of Peacock, Mr. de Gunzburg will oversee Tonal’s strategic operations and business development functions.
- Chief Technology Officer Bryan James — with more than two decades of leadership experience at Google, Nest, Apple, and TiVo, Mr. James will lead Tonal’s software and hardware engineering organizations.
Tonal also recently welcomed Nina Richardson and Jack Lazar to its Board of Directors. Both Richardson and Lazar bring extensive operating experience with consumer hardware and software businesses, and considerable public company board experience.
Tonal, the wall-mounted, strength-training home gym, reported a staggering 700 percent year-over-year increase in sales in 2020.
- 2018 — N/A
- 2019 — ~$12M (YoY)
- 2020 — $89M (YoY)
- 2021 — $225M (bottom line) (YoY)
- Founded: 2016
- Raised: $75M
- Acquisition cost: $500M (in cash, including a $50M earn-out) (source)
- Mirror generated $170 million in revenue in 2020
2) Tempo Fit (SoftBank-backed) (Series C)
- Founded: 2015
- Raised: ~$299M (source, source 2)
- Post-Valuation: ~$950M
- Tempo generated ~$100 million in revenue in 2020
3) FITURE (Series B)
- Founded: 2019
- Raised: ~$371M (source, source 2)
- Post-Valuation: N/A
- Tempo generated ~$100 million in revenue in 2020
- Founded: 2020
- Funding Traction: N/A
- Valuation: N/A
About the Author
Mr. Koch — a serial entrepreneur and late-stage investor specializing in secondary shares.
Previously: Twilio, Xiaomi, iQiyi, PinDuoDuo, Tilray, Livongo, Agora, Bandwidth, Hims.
Currently: Robinhood, Enflame, Grab, Toss, Coursera, Oatly, Epic Games, Chime, and other companies.
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