Hy-Vee announced a pair of strategic partnerships on Wednesday — one involving celebrity-backed burgers and another involving high-intensity fitness training.
The organization plans to build, own and operate 26 Wahlburgers restaurants, a move that will more than double the number of current locations for the burger chain owned by Mark, Donnie and Paul Wahlberg. In addition, Hy-Vee will partner with Orangetheory Fitness to provide customers with convenient access to an intensive group fitness program in or adjacent to its stores.
"These unprecedented collaborations reinforce our company's longstanding commitment to health and wellness, culinary expertise and customer experience," says Hy-Vee chairman, CEO and president Randy Edeker. "However, they also represent a bold step to deliberately evolve our business to meet the change in our customers' lifestyles and spending habits. These partnerships keep us on the leading edge as the retail industry evolves."
Wahlburgers currently operates 17 locations in nine states and Canada. Hy-Vee will build, own and operate 26 Wahlburgers in seven Midwestern states, becoming the brand's largest single franchisee.
"I would personally like to welcome Hy-Vee to the Wahlburgers family," says Paul Wahlberg, chef and co-founder of Wahlburgers. "It's a great honor to be able to partner up with a company that has a long and successful history in the two areas that are very important to Wahlburgers, quality and customer service."
Orangetheory Fitness is a revolutionary fitness program offering a one-of-a-kind, intensive group training workout. With 750 studios open nationwide, the company is on track to open 1,500 in the next two years. Hy-Vee will partner with Orangetheory to offer customers a fitness experience in or adjacent to Hy-Vee stores. In addition, Hy-Vee dietitians will work with Orangetheory members to offer dietetic services, provide samples of nutritional products and lead store tours to showcase items that align with member needs. This partnership creates an integrated fitness component to bolster Hy-Vee’s focus on health and wellness – including in-store dietitians, HealthMarkets, chefs, fresh and organic produce and pharmacies.
The first Hy-Vee Orangetheory Fitness location will open in 2017 in the Twin Cities.