GNC teams up with Banco De Franquias to expand presence in Brazil

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / Yuri de Mesquita Bar
© Getty Images / Yuri de Mesquita Bar
Health and wellness brand, GNC Holdings, announced a partnership with professional retail operator, BFG Brasil Comercial de Vitaminas LTDA, to help grow its brand awareness and reputation in Brazil.

Specializing in operating and managing key retailers in the country, BFG Brasil will help GNC Holdings to increase its franchise outside of the United States and boost its connections to reach more customers in the Latin American marketplace.

Speaking to NutraIngredients-LATAM, Carl Seletz, Chief Global Officer of GNC explained that the company was first introduced to BFG Brasil through its current franchise partner in Argentina.  

Banco de Franquias is the management organization supporting BFG Brasil Comercial de Vitaminas LTDA (BFG Brasil), which also includes the entrepreneurs running GNC Holdings in both Argentina and Uruguay. 

Why Brazil?

Amid the vitamins and dietary supplements market’s positive growth trajectory, the nutritional product company has pinpointed Brazil’s consumer health arena as a key marketplace to expand its business operations. With the Brazilian nutritional supplements space valued at an estimated $3 billion, GNC hopes to access market share through its new partnership.

“Our goal is to give as many Brazilian wellness consumers the best possible access to our GNC Brand and exclusive third party brands through our Partner’s store, distribution, and e-Commerce channels,” ​Seletz went on to say.

GNC’s product portfolio — which is marketed based on the company’s mission to motivate and support the desire to live well — includes multivitamins, fish oil and omegas, minerals, antioxidants and specialty supplements.

Commenting on why the business selected Brazil for its expansion, Seletz revealed: “With the largest population in Latin America, Brazil has been a key target market for GNC.”

Partnership Goals

GNC will add to BFG Brasil’s brand portfolio, which currently includes Alsea, P.F. Chang’s and KFC. Focusing on retail management, as part of its collaborative relationship, the operator will focus on business management, retail, e-commerce, distribution, and marketing knowledge to grow GNC in the Brazilian marketplace.

“This partnership will allow GNC to seamlessly and effectively reach the consumer market, providing an opportunity for multi-channel growth,” ​added Seletz.

The company emphasizes its commitment to convenience, personalization and innovation as it applies a multi-channel business model that sells its product range to company-owned retail stores, domestic and international franchise activities, third-party contract manufacturing, e-commerce and corporate partnerships.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with GNC to help bring Brazilian consumers high-quality products in the vitamin and supplement sector,” ​said Guilherme Soares, Head of BFG Brasil. “We help brands operate with ease and efficiency, allowing GNC to place its primary focus on its continued global expansion,”​ added Soares.

News of the expansion coincides with analysts painting a worrying financial picture for GNC; a picture that stems from the company’s financial reports over the past five years. A recent report ​detailing how “GNC management is scrambling to stabilize the company’s core business in the United States”​, provides potential insight into how the company’s financial landscape may have contributed to its move into Brazil and its plans to increase its presence in Latin America.  

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