SINGAPORE - Several police reports have been lodged against two fitness studios whose outlets have allegedly closed down overnight.
Kyklos Studio and its affiliated brand X Fitness are run by Mr Atlas Ang, 31. Their websites and social media pages were suddenly locked or taken down earlier this week, and he has become uncontactable.
The Straits Times' attempts to contact him for comment have also been unsuccessful.
Several users, who told ST that they bought packages ranging from $200 to $600, are worried that they will not be able to get their money back.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, several said they took up the packages as the studios appeared proper and had outlets in malls.
One woman in her mid-20s spent about $300 in August on a package of 20 classes after attending a trial class.
"I have signed packages with other studios and this has never happened before," she added. "I'm really upset over the fact that they did not even announce anything on their social media and simply disappeared."
She said she had yet to attend a single class and found out about the latest turn of events from a friend on Tuesday. Her friend tried attending a class she had signed up for, but found that the studio was locked.
Freelance instructors at the studio have also been unable to contact Mr Ang.
The studios conduct their classes in GR.iD mall in Dhoby Ghaut and Tekka Place in Serangoon.
A spokesman for Tekka Place said the fitness studio is not a tenant, but would book event spaces for its activities.
A spokesman for GR.iD mall said it was notified of the sudden closure of the studio at 10am on Tuesday and has been trying to contact the owners. "We empathise with the members affected by the closure and will update the relevant parties if we are able to contact them," she added.
The X Fitness website, which is no longer available, also lists classes in Hougang Sports Hall.
A woman in her 20s, who wanted to be known only as LT, said she believes she is one of the last people to have seen Kyklos Studio at GR.iD in operation.
She had booked a 11.15am class with her friends at this studio on Sept 11. As they were walking to the studio at about 10.55am that day, they heard shouting from inside.
Upon entering, they saw two men. LT said one “had a really furious face”, and the other told them to wait outside the studio for a short while.
A few minutes later, she was shocked to receive a notification on her phone that the class had been cancelled. The studio’s doors were then also locked by the staff.
“We were left stranded outside the studio without a clue on what had just happened,” she added. “We decided to just book for another spin class nearby and left shortly after.”
The police confirmed that several reports had been lodged and are looking into the matter.
Consumers Association of Singapore (Case) president Melvin Yong said it received one complaint each against Kyklos Studio and X Fitness between Sept 8 and 13.
“Consumers complained that they had unutilised sessions of fitness classes with these companies, but they were unable to book classes as the companies have ceased operations and become uncontactable,” he added.
One consumer told Case she paid $700 for 50 spin classes from X Fitness but was unable to access its app to make bookings.
Mr Yong said the consumers have been informed on how to seek recourse, including filing claims with the Small Claims Tribunals.
“Case advises consumers to avoid making huge sums of prepayments upfront for pre-paid packages, as it is challenging to seek refunds for unutilised package sessions if the company suddenly closes down or becomes insolvent,” he added.
“Consumers are advised to check the credibility and track record of the company, and understand clearly the cancellation and refund policies before signing a fitness package.”
Business records show that Mr Ang is the director of four businesses dealing with training courses for sports and games. They are ACSG 1, Kyklos, X+ and XSC 1.
ACSG 1 and Kyklos appear to be registered to his home address in Punggol, while XSC 1 is registered to the address of the studio in Dhoby Ghaut.
X+ is registered to an address near Chinatown.
The studio at Dhoby Ghaut was closed when ST visited the mall on Wednesday.
The address listed of its operations in Tekka Place is linked to the mall’s rooftop pavilion, which still contained fitness equipment.
The premises of X+ in Club Street appeared to be cleared out, with the mailbox stuffed with letters for a myriad of companies.
Mr Ang is also listed as the director of Hong Creatives, an advertising outfit, where a
man who answered the phone said only that Mr Ang “would be back soon”.