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Diary of a Startup

Fundraising, marketing and location shopping are all in a day's work.

This story appears in the December 2006 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

It's been a long and interesting journey toward the opening of Karen Jashinsky's teen gym and hangout. We initially visited the 29-year-old entrepreneur in December 2005, and we've watched her various triumphs and setbacks as she's battled to open O2 Max Fitness. Although there's been a delay in the scheduled opening date, Jashinsky is still plowing full speed ahead toward a 2007 launch.

It was the ongoing consultations Jashinsky had with her advisory board that convinced her to think bigger. Originally planning to launch the gym in a smaller space with an SBA loan, she is now finalizing investment deals to raise $1.6 million in startup capital to build out her 10,000- to 12,000-square-foot space. "After crunching the numbers on the various locations we found, the return on the bigger space just made more sense," says Jashinsky. "And [my] advisors felt strongly that that was representative of what the market can really support."

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