Category: tonal

Why expensive workout gear is actually cheap

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines.

For this week’s deep dive Natasha and Alex wanted to dig into the Tonal EC-1, a huge document spread across a number of posts. Our goals were pretty simple: To better understand Tonal’s journey, and also to get into the mind of its author.

So we corralled JP Mangalindan into firing up his computer, microphone, and recording software for a chat. Here’s what we covered:

  • What is Tonal, why is it interesting, and why did JP spend so much time learning about the company?
  • What did he have to leave out of the final report?
  • His views on fitness gear, and the Peloton effect more broadly
  • What was it like to write something so gosh darn long?

The Tonal EC-1 comprises four main articles representing about 10,600 words and a reading time of about 43 minutes:

As Natasha is currently — shh, it’s a secret — working on an EC-1 of her own, we had more than a usual amount of interest in the project. Use code Equity for a super sweet discount to access this story and all of our premium content.

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Strength-training startup Tonal crosses unicorn status after raising $250M

When the pandemic unfolded last year, demand for at-home fitness equipment skyrocketed, and Tonal was no exception. The maker of a smart home fitness trainer experienced an explosive increase in sales, and now the six-year-old San Francisco-based startup is gearing up for its next stage of growth. Tonal is adding $250 million of new funding in a Series E round valuing the startup at $1.6 billion.

Participants in the round include Dragoneer, Cobalt Capital, L Catterton, Sapphire Ventures, and athlete investors Drew Brees, Larry Fitzgerald, Maria Sharapova, Mike Tyson and Sue Bird. According to Tonal, the new funds will allow it to spend more on marketing its strength-training product to shoppers to increase brand visibility, grow its catalog of streamed fitness classes, and invest further in operations and scaling its business to meet increased demand. To date, the at-home fitness tech startup has raised $450 million.

“We’re really getting ready to scale the business: we’re pouring a lot more capital into marketing and brand awareness, and we’re pouring a lot more capital into scaling our supply chain to get ready for the next phase, which I really think is the next two holiday seasons,” says Orady.

As part of its efforts to increase staffing across the organization, Tonal also added three new executives to its bench: COO Shannon Crespin, a former Johnson & Johnson executive; Chief Strategy Officer Gregory de Gunzburg, who previously served as Head of Corporate Strategy and Development at NBCUniversal; and CTO Bryan James, whose previous employers (Read more...)