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RESEARCH

by Megan Whitby, assistant editor

Total revenue dropped by US$7bn, but revenue per visit only decreased by 2 per cent

Industry indicator ISPA’s 2021 study gives the clearest picture yet of how COVID-19 has affected the US spa sector

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pas in the US experienced a US$7bn drop in total revenue in 2020, decreasing by 34 per cent from US$19.1bn at the end of 2019 to US$12.1bn. This was one of the ‘Big Five’ stats revealed as a sneak preview to ISPA’s 2021 US Spa Industry Study at its Stronger Together Summit in May. Conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the report outlines overall revenue, number of spa visits, number of spas, revenue per visit and total employees for the US spa industry in 2020. “These statistics provide the clearest picture yet of the pandemic’s impact in the spa sector,” says Lynne McNees, ISPA president. “We trust these figures, along with the full report coming later this year, will provide the industry at large with meaningful insights they can use to aid their recovery.”

38 spabusiness.com issue 2 2021

Day spas fared better The Big Five results (see table on p39) indicate that resort and hotel spas have been harder hit than days spas with average revenue falling 46 per cent and 31 per cent respectively. Spa visits dropped from 192 million in 2019 to 124 million in 2020, while average revenue per visit shifted slightly from US$99.5 to US$97.5. In addition, as of December 2020, 21,560 spa businesses were recorded, compared to 22,430 in December 2019. But these figures still include temporary closures due to lockdown. PwC found that, as of January 2021, roughly 305,000 spa employees had returned to US spas, compared to the previous 384,000 in January 2020. Overall that’s a drop of 20.6 per cent of the workforce but contractors were the hardest hit with 45.3 per cent of them still not back at work.

Findings were presented by PwC’s McIlheney (above) and Donaldson (below)