A look at the people behind the numbers in area business
MIKE AND ANDREA JONES ALCHEMY
Title: Mike Jones, CEO; Andrea Jones, chief marketing officer
Age: Both are 36
Mike and Andrea Jones opened a location of group fitness studio Alchemy just last week in Minneapolis' North Loop and already are planning more. Many more.
They and their ownership group envision opening 200 Alchemy studios nationally over the next 10 years.
Alchemy's northeast Minneapolis location, which opened in March, has grown rapidly to more than 200 members. The business model, Mike Jones said, "is extremely profitable and sustainable."
Plans call for opening two or three local Alchemy studios next year before possible expansion in the Washington area, where the Joneses are from, and Denver, where they have family and professional connections.
The Joneses helped launched Union Fitness, which operates CrossFit gyms with more than 600 members in St. Paul, Minneapolis and St. Louis Park, in 2009. At Union Fitness and Alchemy they offered long free-trial periods to refine programs, attract members, train employees and plan for their full-time career development.
Mike Jones, a former Marine lieutenant who spent a year in active deployments, earned an MBA at Georgetown University and previously worked in marketing at 3M.
Andrea Jones, a University of Virginia graduate, was a Defense Intelligence Agency analyst before consulting at Booz Allen Hamilton. She previously worked as a Life Time Fitness trainer.
The Alchemy ownership team includes Scott Jagodzinski, executive chairman; Tyler Quinn, chief talent officer; and Molly Hanten, chief operating officer.
Q: What classes does Alchemy offer?
Andrea Jones: We have a 30-minute strength class; a 60-minute yoga class and our signature fusion class, which differentiates us from other classes in blending yoga and dynamic movement to prepare the body for higher intensity or conditioning workouts. A fundamental difference in our classes is coaching; the coaches give you a lot of attention.
Q: How is Alchemy different from Union Fitness?
Mike Jones: CrossFit is a real profound type of program for the right type of person. But there's a much larger group of people who might never do CrossFit. Alchemy takes the elements that we love about CrossFit, eliminates the intimidation and weaves in elements of yoga. It's an accessible product.
Q: How do you manage multiple locations?
Mike Jones: The biggest thing is having the organizational structure in place in a way that treats each location like a stand-alone unit within the greater business.
Andrea Jones: We get buy-in from our employees as well. Being able to offer that full-time opportunity here, we've had examples at our CrossFit business of people buying homes and starting a family. That's important to us.