Before taking the reins as ViSalus CEO in January, Nick Sarnicola poured his thoughts into a passionate memo entitled, “Project Catalyst,” which outlines his strategic vision and the changes he believes are necessary to make Vi the world’s leading vehicle for entrepreneurship.
“I wrote Project Catalyst with a focus on the next 1,000 days,” said Sarnicola. “I knew not every point in the plan would be possible right away, but I wanted to capture and communicate my vision to my partners before making this defining personal, professional, and financial investment.”
Challenge Pro™ Platform
A key untapped opportunity in North America identified by Sarnicola in his strategic plan is the booming health and fitness industry. Seeing a void in the marketplace to support Fitness Professionals with a suite of business tools, Sarnicola developed the idea of Challenge Pro, a new platform launching in June.
In its final stages of development, Challenge Pro aims to provide much-needed business solutions for Fitness Professionals. “If you’re in the fitness industry today, this platform will help you build your brand, get better results for your clients, and grow your income. There’s nothing else like this on the planet that provides all of these benefits in one place,” added Sarnicola.
Challenge Pro recently announced a partnership with Dolvett Quince, a celebrity trainer and star of the hit reality TV series, The Biggest Loser. Quince, as a leading voice in the development of this platform, is excited to see Challenge Pro tackle some of the biggest challenges faced by fitness professionals today. “I feel the pain of people in the industry right now. You want to spend time with and focus on your clients, but you don’t have access to the right tools to run a business. You want to have a great brand, but don’t know how to build a website. You spend all your time chasing low-paying sponsorships, with limited results. Challenge Pro removes those obstacles and puts you back doing what you do best,” Quince explained.
While shoring up the domestic Vi opportunity, leadership has also been supporting a booming business in Italy, where independent Promoters held the country’s first National Success Training (NST) in Rimini in April. Vi Co-Founder and President, Blake Mallen, who traveled to the event with Sarnicola, had high praise for the way Italians have rallied around the Vi opportunity. “To see the team in Italy come together and build to such a huge event with hundreds in the room leading the way and topping many of our production categories, is an inspiring example of what’s possible when a small group comes together with the desire to do great things,” remarked Mallen.
Seeing the power of Vi in new markets sparked another of Sarnicola’s strategic objectives, announcing Vi’s expansion into Mexico in the next 12 months. “The opportunity in Mexico is tremendous. You’re talking about a country of 130 million, where 7 out of 10 adults are overweight. We know we can make a difference there, but there’s a big impact we can have right now with Latinos in the U.S. and Canada as we prepare for our launch,” said Mallen.
To help champion this cause among Latino and Mexican-American field leaders, Mallen brought on industry expert, Mili Mourino, to lead this initiative. “We have 57 million Latinos right now in the U.S. and Canada who need our products, and have the opportunity to lead the way as we prepare to expand into Mexico. Knowing what is possible, I can’t wait to see the amazing success we create for the people who get involved during this Pre-Launch phase,” added Mourino.
Vi Promoters have already seen the impact of Sarnicola’s presence at the helm, with Vi enjoying sales growth in the first three consecutive months of a year for the first time since 2012. The fuel on this fire was added in March, at the company’s National Success Training (NST) in Atlanta, where Sarnicola rolled out enhancements to the Vi Incentives Plan.
As Sarnicola explained, “My commitment was to roll out intentional compensation drivers, to strengthen our incentives so that our Promoters are rewarded for the behaviors that drive the business as they help people transform their health with Vi products.”
Co-Founder and former Vi CEO, Ryan Blair, recognized Sarnicola’s impact on the business inside the walls as well, highlighting changes in the first half of the year.
“Nick has taken the important steps to right-size the cost structure of the business while I am spending my time laser-focused on new strategic partnerships that will power our next generation of Vi innovation,” said Blair.
Sarnicola added, “I’m proud of what we have been able to accomplish as a community and as a company in a short time, but what excites me most is knowing that this is just the beginning. Having tackled large strategic priorities as well as other key moves inside the walls to strengthen the business and operations side, the biggest announcement is yet to come. We recently met with 30 of our top income earners in Los Angeles to preview our biggest idea yet. It will be the most inspiring opportunity we have ever offered, and something that I have been personally passionate about my entire life. To be able to put my full energy behind this new direction in locked arms with the incredible leadership team we have assembled, all I have to say is get on board and come along for the ride.”