Second investment for pioneering women’s fitness firm puts it on track for overseas growth

November 15, 2019

Bristol women’s fitness brand This Mum Runs is limbering up for its first steps into overseas markets following its second round of funding from a group of West of England private investors in just over a year.

The £100,000 from Bristol Private Equity Club (BPEC) will help the trailblazing firm, launched by mum Mel Bound, pictured,  in 2014 with a single Facebook post, launch the first in a series of apps aimed at supporting and encouraging mums worldwide to be happier and healthier through regular exercise. 

The firm now has a community of more than 80,000 women in 12 UK cities and offers hundreds of free runs a month in 50 locations through a team of specially trained Run Angel volunteers.

It also has a growing programme of in real life coaching to support women who are new to running, and a stylish range of running and leisure apparel for mums and kids.

Mel has global aspirations for This Mum Runs – it is poised to launch in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Denmark early next year – and the new app is all part of the plan.

Mel said: “The latest investment from BPEC has meant we are able to launch our Run30 coaching app and put TMR programmes in the hands of mums worldwide in a matter of months rather than years.

“We’re mainly targeting women who have never run before, but also those who have lost confidence since having children, mums who perhaps did a bit of exercise before children but not much since.”

The Run30 app will provide an eight-week programme suitable for all abilities, will be packed full of inspiring content as well as access to an online community of women with the same goals.

“We’ll even help our new members to launch their own This Mum Runs communities in their local area when they complete the programme,” said Mel. “The eventual goal is to build a This Mum Runs community in every city in the world.”

BPEC invested £156,000 in the firm in June last year to help it scale-up its community and expand the apparel range.

Mel said that cash injection was vital as the venture found almost overnight success and it needed to maximise on the initial flood of support.

With a nine-month-old son and a four-year-old daughter and with the pressures of work and motherhood, Mel had completely inactive exercise-wise for years. When she asked on Facebook if anyone wanted to meet up for a run, 75 mums turned up.

“After that word-of-mouth took over and around eight weeks in, hundreds of mums were showing up. I realised there were a lot of women feeling like this and the seed of an idea took shape,” said Mel.

“The investment from BPEC allowed us to grow the ecommerce side of the business and we now ship to 31 countries.

“The main bulk of the investment, however, was spent on growing our incredible team who bring with them a wealth of experience from brands like Headspace and Nike – experience that will be vital as we continue to expand the business.”

Bristol Private Equity Club founding member Jerry Barnes said members had been extremely impressed with how This Mum Runs utilised the initial investment.

“The ethos behind the community business paired with the eye-catching apparel designs and Mel’s focus and determination made it a no-brainer to invest again,” he said.

“Twelve members came together to provide the £100,000 and we’re looking forward to watching the business flourish in coming months.”

Cook Corporate Solicitors acted for BPEC in the deal. BPEC now has 80 successful entrepreneurs and businesspeople from the Bristol area with capital to invest as club members. In three years the club has invested more than £6m into 19 different businesses.


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