SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - May 22, 2013 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - The Little Gym International, the world’s premier enrichment and physical development center for kids 4 months through 12 years, today announced the retirement of longtime President & CEO Bob Bingham and the promotion of Ruk Adams to the same position. The changes are effective June 30.
Adams, 55, has held leadership positions at The Little Gym International for more than 15 years, most recently serving as Senior Vice President of Development since 2003 and additionally Franchise Services and Support since 2008. He rejoined The Little Gym International in 2003 after heading sales for Citadel Broadcasting in Salt Lake City from 1997-2002.
Joining Adams on the executive team are Michael Gragg, who has served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer since 2000; and Alex Bingham, who was promoted to Senior Vice President, Operations. Bob Bingham will continue in an advisory role through 2023 as Chairman of The Executive Committee of The Board of Directors.
“Under Bob’s leadership and vision, The Little Gym International has grown to be the leading children’s enrichment franchise in the world,” said Adams. “Bob has cultivated a family atmosphere, with a corporate culture based on integrity and respect for our franchisees and business partners. I’m honored to be able to lead one of the most talented and passionate teams in the industry as we continue to grow the brand domestically and globally, helping entrepreneurs achieve their dreams and instilling healthy habits in children around the world.”
Bingham is launching a consulting firm, The Bob Bingham Company, LLC, which will provide business strategy and counsel to entrepreneurs and established small- and mid-sized businesses in growth mode. Bingham also is authoring a book on international business strategy, to be published in winter 2014. He previously had a successful career in the broadcasting industry, owning and operating radio stations in Washington, Alaska, Utah and Northern California.
“Ruk has proven himself to be an outstanding leader within The Little Gym organization, and anyone who knows him well knows that he is more than capable to lead the company moving forward. I have had the privilege of knowing and working with Ruk for more than 25 years, and I know that The Little Gym International will be in terrific hands,” said Bingham. “After 20 years of helping franchise owners operate their businesses, I am excited about the opportunity to provide counsel and expertise to other CEOs who are working in entrepreneurial environments to help them grow their brands.”
Bingham retires from The Little Gym International having served as President and CEO since 1993. During his tenure the organization grew from six U.S. franchises to its current size of nearly 300 locations in 29 countries. During the company’s annual meeting in Jacksonville, Fla., last month, Adams revealed 10-year goals of expanding to 450 locations in the U.S. and Canada – including in all 50 states – and of having more than 250 international locations across 40 countries in Asia, Europe and Central and South America.
“We recently have established a number of strategic partnerships with premier family brands that share our core values – including Nickelodeon and LEGO Systems – which is a testament to the nearly four decades of positive experiences that our gym owners have provided to families and their communities,” said Adams. “Our ‘Three-Dimensional Learning’ approach of helping children build physical, mental and social skills through gymnastics, music and dance, and other activities represents a tremendous business opportunity for individuals looking to make a positive impact on young lives.”
From 1993 to 1995 Adams and his wife, Ann, owned and ran one of the first The Little Gym franchises, in Salt Lake City, where Ruk taught karate classes to children in addition to leading the financial and marketing operations for their gym. Ruk first joined The Little Gym International in 1994 as Executive Vice President of Franchise Development, a position he held through 1997.
The Little Gym is the world’s premier enrichment and physical development center for kids ages four months through 12 years. To parents, The Little Gym is an internationally recognized child development program, proven to teach social and physical skills appropriate to each stage of childhood by creating opportunities to experience achievement and build self-confidence. The Little Gym has locations in 29 countries and is represented by 210 locations in the U.S. and nearly 300 total worldwide. For more information, visit The Little Gym at www.TheLittleGym.com.
The Little Gym International