Strategic Shift for Elite Women’s Club: “Chief” to Close London Doors After One Year
Chief, an upscale women-only private members’ club, renowned for its promise of exclusive networking opportunities, is set to close its London clubhouse merely a year after its grand opening in February 2023.
The club, initially established in New York City in 2019, aimed to attract ambitious women to its Georgian townhouse in Bedford Square, Bloomsbury, offering memberships at £7,900 per year.
Co-Founders’ Difficult Decision: Focus on U.S. Operations Leads to UK Club Closure
Co-founders Carolyn Childers and Lindsay Kaplan communicated the challenging decision to members, citing the need to strategically refocus.
The club, valued at over a billion dollars with substantial backing from Google, explained that concentrating on U.S. operations, where over 95% of its members are based, is the most viable path forward.
The closure is effective March 31, 2024.
Chief’s Impressive Profile: Valuation, Membership Count, and Star-Studded Network
Despite the closure, Chief holds a significant profile, valued at over a billion dollars after a $100 million cash injection from Google.
The club claims approximately 20,000 members and boasts a waiting list of 60,000. Executives from major companies like Nike, HBO, Disney, and Pfizer were part of Chief’s network, representing a substantial portion of the U.S. economy.
Women’s Clubs Facing Challenges: Closure of The House of St. Barnabas Adds to the Trend
Chief is not alone in facing closure; The House of St. Barnabas, a non-profit private members’ club with prestigious founding members like Brian Cox and Peter Capaldi, also recently shut its doors.
Originally a charity for the homeless, it transformed into an exclusive club in 2013 but struggled with the economic environment, facing challenges exacerbated by the pandemic and a ceiling collapse.
Challenges for St. Barnabas: Balancing Exclusivity, Employee Welfare, and Economic Sustainability
The House of St. Barnabas, known for balancing exclusivity with social responsibility, found its business model unsustainable amid public transport strikes and a cost-of-living crisis.
Despite its commitment to paying staff the higher London Living Wage, the club faced insurmountable challenges, leading to the decision to close.
The Wing’s Closure Echoes the Trend: American Women-Only Club Faced Racism Allegations
In 2022, The Wing, another American women-only club, fully closed its Fitzrovia operation following racism allegations among its members.
The closure trend among women’s clubs signals challenges in sustaining exclusive spaces amid changing economic conditions and shifting priorities.**Share on Facebook «||» Share on Twitter «||» Share on Reddit «||» Share on LinkedIn