Unexpected closure of kids' sports centers leaves parents anxious

Six local branches of Hani Kids Sports Club closed unexpectedly this week, threatening to leave hundreds of parents out of pocket.

Six local branches of Hani Kids Sports Club, a Beijing-based indoor playground chain, were found to have been closed since Wednesday, threatening to leave hundreds of parents out of pocket, Knews reported.

According to the regulations, companies should register at a local commercial department for their prepaid cards. However, Hani Kids appear not to have done so.

At one branch in a shopping center in Pudong's Zhangjiang area, the store was closed with some notices about the shutdown posted on the roller shutter. Many anxious parents crowded around the branch on the ground floor.

One father said he paid 8,888 yuan (US$1,410) for a "lifelong" membership at the club, which promised that his child could freely use the facilities before turning 12 years old.

Another parent, who spent 13,000 yuan on her card, hopes that she will be able to get the remaining money back since there is 10 years left before it expires.

A record showed that so far 400 to 500 parents have registered their information at the shopping center because of the store's unexpected shutdown.

The official site of Hani shows it has 80 branches across the country, but none of the phone numbers listed are answering calls.

A former regional general manager of Hani's Tianjin arm said he resigned from the company on March 28 after being unpaid for more than two months.

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