• Our Mission

    Bendy Beast Fitness is a safe space for all body types and shapes, genders, ages, races, and sexual orientations. Whoever you are and wherever you're at on your fitness journey, we pride ourselves on accepting and supporting everyone.
    We believe our students can experience a new way of being in the world: learning to love their bodies, learning to love who they are, and after overcoming challenges in the studio, become empowered to conquer any type of challenge life throws at them.

  • The Problem

    Currently in Memphis, this type of safe, diverse, and healthy community is not an easy thing to find. Our city, and the entire Mid-South region, struggles with poor health, rampant discrimination, hate crimes, violence against women, and violence against the LGBTQ community.
    Problem Worth Solving:

    According to a study by WalletHub.com, Memphis is the 3rd least healthy city among the top 150 U.S. cities. The study's authors compared the cities across 34 key measurements, ranging from "cost of doctor visit" to "fruits and vegetables consumed" to "fitness clubs per capita." Memphis's worst scores came in "walking trails per capita" and "share of physically active adults."


    Memphis is also one of the most dangerous cities in the country, ranked as the 3rd most violent big city in the US according to a 2018 report by the FBI. Memphis police respond to more than 40 domestic-violence calls each day. In fact, more than half of all violent crime in Memphis is classified as domestic violence. To greatly understate the situation, it is a difficult place for women to feel safe and empowered.
    Throughout the city, there is also a real lack of safe spaces for the LGBTQ community. "Memphis found itself at the top of another negative list. This time, for the number of hate crimes committed against gays and lesbians. On this list, the Bluff City ranks first in the entire state of Tennessee." (wmcactionnews5.com)

  • Our Opportunity

    We are creating a home base where diverse people of all genders, sexual orientations, races, and body types feel comfortable to be themselves, to connect in a positive way with their bodies, and nurture their own health and wellness.

    Bendy Beast Fitness will be a new community center in Memphis - a fitness studio which specializes in diversity, safety, and health. We believe in the power of movement, fitness, and connecting with others to transform people's lives. Our specialty will be group fitness classes in Pole Dancing and Aerial Arts.

  • Completed Milestones

    What we've already done:


    October 2016

    Began running Pole and Aerial private lessons from a small studio in Downtown Memphis.


    February 2017

    Began running Poleluminati - a local variety show bringing together the dance and performing arts communities.


    October 2018

    Began running group Pole Fitness classes from the Bendy Beast downtown studio.


    December 2018

    Purchased a commercial building at Tax Sale auction, conveniently located to Downtown and Midtown neighborhoods.


    Now it's time to build our new home.


    March 2019

    Begin renovations at 1202 Minna with Garland Sullivan Company as the contractor.


    September 2019

    Grand opening with full group fitness class schedule at 1202 Minna.


    September 2020

    Reach break-even point in the new space.


    December 2021

    Reserve 6 months of operating expenses in savings and pay back loans + interest.

  • Project Budget: $100,000

    Where the money is coming from:


    1. $58K, Invested by owner

    • $23,000 - Spent on building purchase
    • $35,000 - Will cover majority of renovation costs
    2. $12K, Kickstarter
    • $11,000 - Budget for studio equipment
    • $1,000 - Budget for rewards for Kickstarter backers
    3. $30K, Private Loans
    • $5,000 - Final piece renovation costs; due in July '19
    • $25,000 - First 6 months of operating expenses, Sep '19 - Feb '20
    • ** If Private Loans cannot be secured, this can instead be put on the owner's existing credit cards, though it is not preferred.


    Where the money is going:


    1. $23K, Purchase of the building


    2. $40K, Renovation of the building

    • $2,500 - Demolition & site prep
    • $10,000 - Roof & HVAC repair
    • $1,500 - Electrical
    • $5,000 - Plumbing
    • $1,500 - Kitchen/Bathroom fixtures
    • $3,000 - Floor refinishing
    • $1,500 - Lighting & fixtures
    • $2,000 - Full wall dance mirror
    • $1,000 - Trimming & framing
    • $1,500 - Paint
    • $2,000 - Exterior: Signage, graffiti cleanup, landscaping
    • $8,500 - Contractor profit & design fee

    3. $25K, 6 months of operating expenses on hand


    4. $12K, Studio equipment

    • $2,500 - 6 Poles + shipping
    • $1,000 - Crash mats
    • $3,000 - 6 Lyras, rigging hardware, + shipping
    • $1,000 - 6 Hammocks, rigging hardware, + shipping
    • $1,000 - Free weights + shipping
    • $500 - Yoga mats & accessories
    • $450 - iPad
    • $250 - Stereo system
    • $500 - Nest security camera system
    • $800 - Misc items: Desk chair, clock, storage bins, towels, ...
    • $1,000 - Budget for rewards for Kickstarter backers

    1202 Minna Place


    Our new space is located in the Annesdale neighborhood, on the Southern edge of Midtown. We will be directly South of Crosstown Concourse on Cleveland St., and directly between Downtown and Cooper Young.





    We are seeking a private business loan for $30,000, at 7.5% interest, for a term of 3 years. Investor profit: $4,849.


    Real Estate Collateral:
    • While we are creating a fitness studio, this venture is also a real estate investment.
    • The property at 1202 Minna St. has already been bought, with the deed transferred into our name.
    • In the worst-case scenario Bendy Beast Fitness fail to meet the financial projections, we will pay off the remainder of the loan using rental profits from the building.
    • Assuming the space is rented to a tenant for $1,500/month, we will make an annual $15,000 (10 months) of profit. In 3 years, which is the term of our loan, the space will generate $45,000 - more than the needed amount for repayment.
    • Given rental properties and prices on the market, and the scarcity of already-renovated small commercial spaces near Downtown and Midtown, this space would rent very quickly.
    Appraisal of 1202 Minna Pl. Property
    • Using the Gross Rental Multiplier method, assuming that 1202 Minna would rent to a tenant for $1,500/month ($20/SF/y), the building is worth $144,000.

  • How OUR Studio Profits

    Projected Profit Yr 1

    Schedule 25% Full


    Monthly Inflow Estimates

    • Pole/Aerial Classes: + $1,327
    • Ground Classes: + $2,316
    • Open Gym: + $300
    • Studio Rentals: + $90
    • Total: + $4,033


    Monthly Outflow Estimates

    • Property taxes: - $156
    • Utilities: - $100
    • Internet: - $70
    • Property Insurance: - $100
    • Liability Insurance: - $100
    • Gym Scheduling Software: - $90
    • Security Cameras: - $13
    • Website & Email: - $20
    • Facebook Ads: - $100
    • Supplies & Maintenance: - $150
    • Payroll Software: - $50
    • Instructor Fees: - $3,000
    • Total: - $3,949
    Monthly Profit Year 1: $84
    Annual Profit Year 1: $1008
    * Essentially calling this break-even

    Projected Profit Yr 2

    Schedule 50% Full


    Monthly Inflow Estimates

    • Pole/Aerial Classes: + $3,120
    • Ground Classes: + $4,608
    • Open Gym: + $900
    • Studio Rentals: + $270
    • Total: + $8,898


    Monthly Outflow Estimates

    • Property taxes: - $156
    • Utilities: - $100
    • Internet: - $70
    • Property Insurance: - $100
    • Liability Insurance: - $100
    • Gym Scheduling Software: - $90
    • Security Cameras: - $13
    • Website & Email: - $20
    • Facebook Ads: - $100
    • Supplies & Maintenance: - $150
    • Payroll Software: - $50
    • Instructor Fees: - $3,000
    • Total: - $3,949
    Monthly Profit Year 2: $4,949
    Annual Profit Year 2: $59,388
    * $12,471 to Taxes
    ** $24,000 saved as Emergency Fund: 6 months of operating expenses
    *** $22,917 paid towards Loan Principal

    Projected Profit Yr 3

    50% Y/O/Y Growth


    Monthly Inflow Estimates

    • Pole/Aerial Classes: + $4,680
    • Ground Classes: + $6,912
    • Open Gym: + $1000
    • Studio Rentals: + $755
    • Total: + $13,347


    Monthly Outflow Estimates

    • Property taxes: - $234
    • Utilities: - $150
    • Internet: - $105
    • Property Insurance: - $150
    • Liability Insurance: - $150
    • Gym Scheduling Software: - $135
    • Security Cameras: - $19
    • Website & Email: - $30
    • Facebook Ads: - $150
    • Supplies & Maintenance: - $225
    • Payroll Software: - $75
    • Instructor Fees: - $4,500
    • Total: - $5,924
    Monthly Profit Year 3: $7,423
    Annual Profit Year 3: $89,076
    * $18,706 to Taxes
    ** $17,083 pays the remainder of the Loan Principal
    *** $4,849 pays the loan interest
    *** 5% profit to charitable giving: CHOICES Reproductive Health, OUT Memphis, and Memphis Says No More Sexual Assault Resource Fund
  • OUR Target Market

    According to Shelby County, TN Official Website, Shelby County had a total population of 927,644 for the year 2010. The 2017 city population of Memphis was 652,236, making Memphis the 25th largest city in the United States. We believe that the population of Memphis, as well as the population of the surrounding towns within Shelby County, are all potential customers. We have divided these potential customers into the following groups:

    • College Students/Young Adults (20-24 yrs): There are 66,450 people who fall in this category, according to the Shelby County 2010 census information.
    • Single and Married Adults (25-54 yrs): This will include single people and married couples. The Shelby County 2010 census information showed there were 387,587 people in this age group.

  • Sales & Marketing

    Sales Channels:
    • We sell spots in group fitness classes, as well as private lessons. These are booked online and paid in advance through our website.
    • Our new space will also have a significant retail presence, adding a new stream of revenue. We will sell shirts and other branded items, pole grip, clothes, and accessories, yoga mats and accessories, and other fitness and lifestyle products.
    Marketing Activities:
    • Photos & Videos shared through the Bendy Beast social media channels. Our social media channels are the main way new customers find the studio and sign up for classes.
    • Performing showcase pieces in dance shows around town: Poleluminati, Opera Memphis' Opera Takes Flight, Grind City Flow Festival Showcase, Memphis Roller Derby Halftime Show
    • Running the variety show Poleluminati and bringing performers and performing arts lovers from all around town together for a night of entertainment
    • Targeted ads on Facebook
    • Targeted ads on Google
    • Email marketing list to current and past students

  • Related Businesses in memphis

    1. High Expectations Aerial Arts

    Problems Our Studio Solves:

    Instructors at High Expectations pay to be a part of the studio, rather than making money for their work. The space is very large, and not very temperature controlled or aesthetically designed. Jiu jitsu students who share the space make some aerial students uncomfortable. The studio owner lives in another state and is disconnected from many of the needs of the community.

    2. Nikki Dark Fitness

    Problems Our Studio Solves:

    This studio does not run any group pole classes - only private lessons. The studio owner is widely felt to have personality conflicts with students, and many existing pole dancers in Memphis are not willing to go there. The studio is located in Bartlett, a suburb of Memphis, and many residents of Midtown and Downtown are not willing to drive there.

    3. BodyWorkz Pole Fitness

    Problems Our Studio Solves:

    Their main focus is on pole parties. Poles seem very close together. Has a built-in bar? No mention of teacher trainings or certifications. It seems like a great place for a girls night out, but not like a safe fitness community.

    4. The Goods Experience

    Problems Our Studio Solves:

    The Goods classes are growing very quickly and are offering a great customer experience. They offer a Stilettos dance class, not pole or aerial arts. The studio the classes are run from is not central.


    Liz Kinnmark

    Founder & Owner

    Liz has been an entrepreneur for 12 years, and a fitness instructor for 4. Her first company, Design Glut, sold clever housewares and jewelry to boutiques all around the world, including the MoMA Design Store, Urban Outfitters, and Target. In addition to running Bendy Beast, she teaches classes at several fitness studios in Memphis, and runs the popular variety show "Poleluminati".

    Jessica Shea Frey


    As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and the Founder/CEO of Forward Counseling, Jessica has over 10 years experience in counseling, marketing, small business startups and non-profit launches. She approaches counseling and consulting from a values-based perspective, guiding her clients to investigate and solidify their core values and work toward rebuilding their company around these beliefs.

    Garland Sullivan

    Contractor & Designer

    Garland Sullivan, owner and licensed general contractor for Garland Sullivan Company, was drawn to the business 30 years ago because he enjoys working in the field and with people on a daily basis. It’s something new every day. We do a lot of our own in-house design work. Spending time for the customer and designer and contractor to meet together is very important — being very hands on is the biggest contributor.

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