Waukesha-based Swimtastic Corp., which operates Swimtastic Swim School locations in Wisconsin, Nebraska and Florida, has been acquired by Denver-based swim school franchisor SafeSplash Brands LLC.
[caption id="attachment_132430" align="alignright" width="300"] Swimtastic is based in Waukesha.[/caption]
Founded by elementary school teacher and longtime swim teacher Susan Wainscott and her husband Barrett in 1999, Swimtastic offers swim education to both children and adults. It has six locations, in Waukesha, Franklin, Menasha, Omaha, Neb., Lincoln, Neb. and Captiva, Fla. The Franklin, Lincoln and Omaha locations are franchises. Swimtastic has 75 corporate employees. The Wainscotts sold the company for an undisclosed price and will continue to be employed by SafeSplash.
With the acquisition of Swimtastic, SafeSplash now has 111 swim school locations in 13 states, making it the largest swim school operator in North America. The company, founded in 2006, offers administrative services, a teaching curriculum, franchisee training and support, and negotiated national partnerships with health brands like LA Fitness and 24 Hour Fitness. SafeSplash, which has more than 200 corporate employees and plans to have 400 locations by 2020, was recently named to the list of Fastest Growing Franchises of the Year by Entrepreneur magazine.
"We just saw huge opportunity in merging with (SafeSplash) and becoming one swim school. There’s just a lot more resources available,” said Barrett Wainscott. “Probably the biggest thing for us, as a personal decision, was to continue to be able to build the Swimtastic name. We’ve been approached before about opportunities like this, but nobody was saying what (SafeSplash chairman and chief executive officer) Matt Lane was saying, which was that they want to build our brand and continue to expand in markets that we’re already in.”
[caption id="attachment_132432" align="alignright" width="300"] Swimtastic, which offers swim classes for children and adults, will retain its branding in the sale.[/caption]
Swimtastic will retain its branding on existing locations and on new locations in the Midwest and Southeast areas of the U.S., Barrett said. It will also be able to expand its line of swim products, such as goggles and swim caps, into SafeSplash locations around the country.
"We are delighted to welcome Swimtastic to our family of brands," Lane said. "The Swimtastic commitment to customer service, quality instruction and franchisee support closely aligns with SafeSplash's industry leading values. The addition of Swimtastic to our portfolio expands our presence in the learn-to-swim market across the U.S. and enhances our base of established and successful franchisees. Simply put, this investment supports our objective of being the premier learn-to-swim franchise in the world."