GNC acquires U.K. sports nutrition e-commerce retailer

PITTSBURGH — GNC Holdings on Wednesday announced it has acquired A1 Sports Limited (d.b.a. Discount Supplements), a multi-brand sports nutrition e-commerce retailer in the United Kingdom. 

The acquisition was funded with cash on hand. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Following the acquisition, GNC.com, LuckyVitamin.com and discount-supplements.co.uk will continue to operate as separate businesses, each with its own product offerings and target customers.

"Discount Supplements offers a broad selection of competitively priced proprietary and third-party products, and is a leader in the U.K.'s sports nutrition market," stated Joe Fortunato, GNC chairman, president and CEO. "This market — estimated to be [$485.9 million] — has demonstrated consistent double-digit growth, which is forecasted to continue. The online channel has captured nearly one-third market share and is growing faster than the market overall," he said. 

"Entering the U.K. and other key European and Scandinavian markets are core elements of our strategic plan to expand GNC's global reach," Fortunato added. "With this acquisition, we are well positioned to capitalize on the fastest-growing channel in Europe's top market. We also see the potential to leverage GNC's marketing, product development and procurement capabilities to drive synergies. This includes having Discount Supplements introduce premium GNC sub-brands in the sports nutrition, vitamin and diet categories into the U.K. and other markets."

Discount Supplements — founded in 2004 — is expected to grow to approximately $32.4 million million in revenue in 2013.

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