News

HomeIndiaEntertainment

Indian Amusement Park Industry

The amusement and theme park industry in India is about two decades old and it is relatively new when compared to its origin in USA & Europe. This industry found its roots in India during mid and late 1980s when a few innovative entrepreneurs took challenge of pioneering few amusement parks in Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai. The growth in this industry started only in the last decade and that happened possibly during the advent of globalization when economic potential of the social capital began to be perceived.

Facts on Indian Amusement Park Industry:

  • The amusement industry in India is at a growing stage currently with more and more developments happening in this industry all across the country.
  • The size of the Indian Amusement Park business is estimated to be around Rs 4000 crores and is estimated to grow by 10% per cent per annum in next couple of years.
  • The amusement and theme park industry is deemed to be worth Rs. 10000 crores in India by 2020.
  • Currently for a population of 1.15 billion in the country, there are only 120 amusement parks and 45 Family Entertainment Centers. This indicates that the growth potential of Indian amusement and theme park industry is substantial.
  • Global leaders in entertainment parks and attractions like Universal Studios, Disney, Sony and Ripley Entertainment are mulling over investments of billions of dollars in India considering the vast potential in this region. Private equity funds are also aggressively dedicating resources towards this sector.
  • The Indian small and big players in the Amusement Industry are looking at the tremendous growth potential of this industry in the next 5 years.
  • Growth of India's retail sector had been the main driving force for the amusement industry in India.
  • Globally, domestic and international tourists comprise more than 50% of the total footfall at popular amusement parks.
  • Transport corridors like expressways and the Metro line are bringing an increasing number of people closer to entertainment hubs.
  • The high growth potential of the industry in highly populated India will boost tourism, social infrastructural development as well as employment generation. The success and growth potential of this industry is resulting into the advent of new manufacturers of amusement parks' rides in India.

Structure & Development of Amusement Park Sector:
Amusement Parks are recreational facilities that offer a varied range of entertainment options ranging from theme parks to spine chilling roller coaster, 3D theater to giant wheel, in a cluster format. These parks provide one-stop-shop leisure and entertainment solutions for the entire family at one place and are a key source of tourist attraction (domestic and foreign) and revenue generation for the State. The demand for entertainment options such as amusement parks, I-max, shopping malls are rapidly increasing across the Country. The key demand drivers for the segments are rising base of middle class, increasing disposable income, changing lifestyle, cultural shift and increasing emphasis to lead a holistic life with a balance of work and leisure.

Tourism- Amusement parks
During the last decade domestic tourism had grown @ 14% on an average and currently it is estimated at 527 million. Out of this, the amusement park industry generated only 15 million footfall during last year. Globally, domestic and international tourists comprise more than 50% of the total footfall at popular amusement parks. We can, therefore, expect that there would be manifold increase in footfall in amusement parks in India as the large parks in India are gradually converting themselves to larger destination parks with additional investments following the foot steps of large global parks. Currently for a population of 1.1 billion in the country, there are only 120 amusement parks and 45 Family Entertainment Centres. This indicates that the growth potential of Indian amusement and theme park industry is substantial.

The high growth potential of the industry in highly populated India will boost tourism, social infrastructural development as well as employment generation. The success and growth potential of this industry is resulting into the advent of new manufacturers of amusement parks' rides in India.
A recent market survey research shows that this industry in India is growing at a rapid pace and over 120 amusement parks and water parks are currently in operation in India. Out of them only 15% can be classified in the "large parks" category, 30% as medium size parks and balance 55% are small size local parks. Investments to the tune of Rs 10,000 crore are likely to flow into the domestic amusement and leisure sector by 2020 with about 500 new parks are expected to come up across the country. The Rs 4,000-crore Indian amusement and leisure industry expects fresh investment of Rs 10,000 crore by the year 2020. In terms of employment generation, the new parks are likely to create jobs for six crore man-hours per month.

It is estimated that the total capital investment made in the amusement and theme park industry in India till date, is more than INR 40 billion (excluding investment on land). The estimated annual revenue generated by this industry is approx INR 20 billion, at present, which is expected to grow to almost three times by the year 2020 at a CAGR of over 11%.

Today, Indian manufacturers can produce international standard quality products    at a competitive price for both the domestic and the global market. Both these areas have good potential. Amusement parks have not received their due recognition for their enormous potential as an infrastructural facility for tourism. The amusement industry worldwide is a very significant part of the tourism effort. In India, the tourism policy does not address the needs and the potential of the amusement industry. As such, today the amusement industry in India receives no special incentives.

Recreation Industry - Amusement parks
Recreation Industry is currently one of the most exciting sectors in India. The current market for leisure is estimated to cross USD 1 bn in next few years. The leisure industry mainly consist of amusement park, malls family entertainment centers (FECs) and multiplexes. The present consumer base is estimated around 30 million people.

At present there are around 200 FECs in the Country and the number is expected to grow to 400 in the next couple of years. Amusement parks contribute nearly 40% of the total leisure industry turnover.

Through the years though there is a healthy growth, but at the same time it is burdened by local entertainment tax ranging from 10 to 25 per cent in various states. Further if any imposition of Central Tax like Service Tax will cripple the whole industry. The industry can absorb either of the taxes and not both, he stated. Further he urged to make amusement industry an integral part of tourism and development in India at the Central Government Level. Recreation Industry is currently one of the most exciting sectors in India. The current market for leisure is estimated to cross USD 1 bn in next few years. The leisure industry mainly consist of amusement park, malls family entertainment centers (FECs) and multiplexes. The present consumer base is estimated around 30 million people.
At present there are around 200 FECs in the Country and the number is expected to grow to 400 in the next couple of years. Amusement parks contribute nearly 40% of the total leisure industry turnover.

Retail- Amusement parks
Growth of India's retail sector had been the main driving force for the amusement industry in India.

Famous Ten Amusement parks in India ( in alphabetical order) :

  • Adventure Island (Delhi)
  • Essel World (Mumbai)
  • Fun n food Village(Delhi)
  • Nicco Park (Kolkata)
  • Ocean Park (Hyderabad)
  • Veegaland (Kochi)
  • VGP Universal Kingdom (Chennai)
  • Vismaya (Kannur, Kerela)
  • Wonderla (Bangalore)
  • Worlds of Wonder (Entertainment City, Noida)


Current trends


Amusement parks seek uniform entertainment tax

The Indian Association of Amusement Parks and Industries, apex body of the amusement parks, has sought uniformity in the entertainment tax being imposed by different states. The Association rues that the exorbitantly charged entertainment tax by some states is a major impediment in the growth of the industry in these regions. “West Bengal, Punjab and Gujarat charge entertainment tax at 20%, 40% and 25% respectively, whereas the entertainment tax rate hovers around 5-15% in majority of the states.

Real Estate companies plans to enter into this market
Though the unorganised players hold a majority share in the market, the organised players are also expanding their base. Groups like Nicco Parks, Zee group, Unitech & Turner and various real estate companies are developing amusement parks in different regions. The foreign developers are also stepping into the Indian amusement industry through collaborations with Indian companies.

Growing transportation facilities
Transport corridors like expressways and the Metro line are bringing an increasing number of people closer to entertainment hubs. To that extent, they trigger growth of formal means of entertainment. One major development witnessed in National Capital Region (NCR) over the last 4-5 years has been the expansion of Delhi Metro line. This process started in Central and Western parts of the city and is now on course to link South Delhi and Gurgaon. This has provided common man with a mode of transport that is both economical and convenient. While daily journeys like the ones to college or workplace have been simplified - the occasional weekend outing too has been made much simpler as a result of enhanced connectivity to popular entertainment destinations.

Loyalty Program:


Loyalty programs are structured marketing efforts that reward, and therefore encourage, loyal buying behavior — behavior which is potentially beneficial to the firm. Loyalty cards and membership cards with personalized information add tremendous value to customer service and strengthen a company's brand recognition. The plastic card adds prestige to the card holder and confers benefits to him.
A loyalty card program is a marketing program that rewards customers with discounts and rebates for their repeated business, while providing sellers with information about the customer's purchasing patterns. Customers register and then are given a card that they present whenever they make a purchase. Both the seller and the consumer profit from these programs. Customers receive discounts or rebates and sellers receive information that enables them to offer their customers the products that they prefer. The program thus achieves the objectives of rewarding most frequent customers and ensuring repeat purchase. A win-win situation results with both buyer and issuer gaining.


Clear and specific objectives
Objectives are to a loyalty program what the destination is to a journey. A successful loyalty program is based on specific measurable targets and objectives. For instance, ‘increasing share of wallet by 10% by year-end’ is a better objective than ‘increasing sales’. Laying down specific objectives has several advantages. It enables the retailer to design appropriate loyalty strategies and target relevant consumer segments. It simplifies the process of communicating the rationale behind the program to all concerned. Once the program is launched, the progress can be monitored against the goals and targets, and strategic changes made if required.


Thorough research and analysis
The customer is at the core of all loyalty-building measures. Hence, gaining a deep insight into consumer behaviour, motivation and expectations is crucial to the success of a loyalty program. The research needs to be well balanced and must contain data from various perspectives like demographic profile and socio-economic status of customers, purchase patterns, behavioural drivers, reward expectations, special interests and lifestyle factors.


The feel-good factor
If there is one single factor that can decide the fate of a loyalty program, it is the personal touch. The raison de etre of a customer loyalty program is to make the customer feel privileged and valued. The best programs do not stop with doling out rewards, cards and discounts. Instead, they constantly work at building a lasting relationship with the customer through various initiatives like customized loyalty cards, newsletters that not only help the firm and the customer stay in touch but also create a sense of belonging; a card or a voucher on birthdays and special occasions and organizing members-only events. For instance, members of Club West, the loyalty club of the Westside chain, receive an exclusive invitation to the bi-annual sale. They have the privilege of starting their shopping 90 minutes before the store's regular opening hour on the first day of the sale. The chain also pampers its loyalty program members with birthday cards, gift vouchers and special discounts. To ensure that the relationship is a two-way affair, Westside regularly seeks feedback from its members and ensures that complaints, if any, are dealt with promptly.

Smart rewards
No loyalty program can survive on assumptions like ‘everyone loves a discount’. A smart reward is one that is valued by the customer and at the same time, meets the program’s objectives. Variety, uniqueness and attainability are among the several aspects to be considered while offering rewards. Often, an ongoing privilege scheme such as a discount on every purchase makes more business sense than a one-time gift, since the former encourages more footfalls and repeat purchases. Some of the most popular loyalty programs also involve several retailers and services as partners. This bundling of rewards creates a perception of maximum benefit to the customer, who becomes eligible for gifts and discounts from each of the partners. A prime example is UK’s Nectar Card, which is jointly floated by Sainsbury’s, BP, Debenhams Stores, Ford and many other partners. Similarly, the Bonus Link Card, which is hugely popular in Malaysia, allows members to earn points and rewards at several major retailers.


Technology
Thanks to the technology revolution, cutting-edge software and data tracking mechanisms have emerged as a distinctive feature of the best loyalty program. As with any strategic intervention, the operational aspects are as crucial to the effectiveness of a loyalty program as the concept and plans. Loyalty software that combine multiple functions like data tracking and storage, automated transactions, updating membership details, points and churn etc. can ensure that the loyalty initiative is well co-coordinated, efficient and hassle-free.


Data mining
A major advantage of implementing a loyalty program is that the company gets access to a wealth of customer-related data. Successful retailers realize that the utility of this data is not restricted to the loyalty program. They use the information to foster better relationships with the customer, improve the product or service delivery process, from new product development to the nitty-gritty of the marketing strategy, and enhance the quality of business intelligence. A smart firm realizes that the first step to customer loyalty is through customer satisfaction.

Ongoing communication
Many firms make the mistake of launching a loyalty program with great fanfare, and then letting it drift. A loyalty program is not a one-time affair, and definitely cannot run on its own steam. It needs a push now and then to enliven it, and to get the customer enthused once again. The best programs maintain an active relationship with the customer by informing them of new developments, offers etc. and seeking their feedback. This last bit is tricky, for customers also expect firms to act on feedback and let them know they are taking the communication seriously.


Organizational commitment
Customer loyalty programs need complete support and commitment from the top management in order to be successful. The program should also secure buy-in from all employees concerned by involving them in formulating the program strategy and implementation plan. Nothing could be more disastrous than a disgruntled employee lackadaisically administering a loyalty program. A final word – a loyalty program reflects the values and culture of a company. The truly successful loyalty programs are not just short-term measures to expand the customer base. By aligning with the organization’s strategy, mission and vision, they contribute significantly to long-term profitability, growth and competitiveness.


Various Loyalty Programs in Amusement Parks across World:


1.    Walt Disney Florida
The Walt Disney World Resort (also known informally as Disney World) is the world's most-visited entertainment resort. Located in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, approximately 21 miles (34 km) southwest of Orlando, Florida, United States, the resort covers an area of 30,080 acres (12,173 ha; 47 sq mi) and includes four theme parks, two water parks, 23 on-site themed resort hotels (excluding eight more that are on-site, but not owned by the Walt Disney Company), including a campground, two spas and physical fitness centers, five golf courses, and other recreational venues and entertainment.

Loyalty Program
Walt Disney has two types of loyalty passes –

  • Premium Annual Pass
  • Annual Pass

Premium Annual Pass ($744.44) includes following benefits-

  • Admission for one year to all 4 Walt Disney World theme parks .
  • Access to multiple Walt Disney World theme parks on the same day.
  • Complimentary theme park parking.
  • Access to: Disney's Blizzard Beach Water Park, Disney's Typhoon Lagoon Water Park, Disney Quest Indoor Interactive Theme Park, Disney's Oak Trail Golf Course and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
  • Special Pass holder discounts on Resort Hotels, dining, merchandise and more.
  • Exclusive Pass holder communications with behind-the-scenes information.
  • Exclusive Pass holder special events and privileges.

Annual Pass ($611.31) includes following benefits-

  • Admission for one year to all 4 Walt Disney World theme parks.
  • Same-day admission to all 4 Walt Disney World theme parks.
  • Complimentary theme park parking.
  • Special Pass holder discounts on Resort Hotels, dining, merchandise and more.
  • Exclusive Pass holder communications with behind-the-scenes information.
  • Exclusive Pass holder special events and privileges.

2.    Ocean Park, Hong Kong
Ocean Park Hong Kong, commonly known as Ocean Park, is a marine mammal park, oceanarium, animal theme park and amusement park, situated in Wong Chuk Hang and Nam Long Shan in the Southern District of Hong Kong. Founded in 1977 by the then Governor of Hong Kong Sir Murray MacLehose, Ocean Park has grown to about 35 attractions and rides. The park has won several awards, including The World's Seventh Most Popular Amusement Park and 33rd Most Visited Tourist Attractions in the World by Forbes


Loyalty Program
The name of the Ocean Park’s loyalty program is Smart Fun Annual Passes. The Smart Fun Annual Pass entitles holders to unlimited admission to Ocean Park for an entire year. As well as unlimited admission, the holder also benefit from a host of other discounts and exclusive offers.

The smart fun annual pass comes in 3 categories-

  • Gold pass
  • Silver pass
  • Student pass

Smart fun card includes following benefits-

  • Unlimited admission to Ocean Park during opening hours for a year excluding private functions, wedding banquets and Halloween Bash night event being hold in the Park.
  • 50% off "Ocean Park Halloween Bash" night admission fee in designated dates.
  • Priority seating at Ocean Theatre and Whiskers Theatre.
  • HK$25 parking discount (except all coaches) every time you visit. Plus one free car park re-entry at any time during the day.
  • Dining at Middle Kingdom Restaurant will receive a FREE glass of orange juice (For dine-in only).
  • Dining at the Terrace Café will receive a FREE glass of juice; a member will receive 2 glasses of juice with any meal of $100, 4 glasses with any meal of $200, etc (For dine-in only).
  • Special discount on Birthday Party at the Bayview Restaurant or Whiskers Harbour.
  • Exclusive education tours.
  • 10% discount on gifts at Ocean Park souvenir shops (except cameras, films, batteries and selected items) and on the purchase of fish for sea lion feeding at Pacific Pier.
  • 10% discount on the delicious menus at the Neptune's Restaurant, the Bayview Restaurant, the Terrace Café , Café Ocean, Panda Café & Middle Kingdom (Chinese) Restaurant.
  • 10% discount on spending at permanent food kiosks (except McDonald's Restaurant and mobile food carts).

3.    Sentosa Island Singapore
Located on the tranquil eastern end of the island sits Sentosa Cove, Singapore’s first and most exclusive marina residential community. This exclusive and unrivalled enclave offers tropical resort living, just minutes away from Singapore's city centre. With an already bustling residential community, Sentosa Cove will see over 2,000 homes nestled here by 2014. Together with romantic quayside restaurants, retail and specialty shops, Singapore’s only truly oceanfront residences, Sentosa Cove is quickly becoming the world’s most desirable address.


Loyalty Program
On 1 April 2012, Sentosa offered card members a plethora of perks from its over 60 food outlets, two themed attractions, six hotels and a gamut of entertainment options including exclusive benefits at concerts, special events and even free parking – to further tap into the local segment which forms the bulk of repeat visitorship to the resort.

4.    Geneting Highland
Genting Highlands otherwise known as Resorts World Genting is the flagship integrated resort developed by Genting Group. It is nestled on a mountain peak (maximum elevation about 1,860 m) within the Titiwangsa Mountains on the border between the states of Pahang and Selangor of Malaysia. Resorts World Genting is operated by Genting Malaysia Berhad, which also operates Awana chain of resorts & hotels. It is accessible by car from Kuala Lumpur in one hour, or also accessible by a cable car called Genting Skyway (3.38 km) which at its opening used to be the world's fastest and South East Asia's longest gondola lift.

Membership gives the holder following benefits –

  • 1 year Unlimited Fun at Genting Theme Park
  • All existing WorldCard  benefits
  • Earn & Redeem WorldCard points
  • Special privileges to take part in Genting Theme Park events & activities
  • Special rates for Genting Theme Park express pass
  • Special rates for Genting Theme Park mascot merchandise
  • Buy one FREE one Bowling Game at Genting Bowl
  • 50% Discount on Sky Venture Flight Pass
  • Free ONE Mystery Gift with any Purchase/Top-Up of RM30 in EZiCash Card at Genting Video Games Park
  • RM2 Discount on Genting Skyway Normal Ticket
  • Buy ONE Movie Ticket Free ONE Pop-Corn at Cineplex

5.       Loyalty Program of IRPPL
Irppl has its loyalty program in both TGIP mall and WOW.

TGIP Loyalty Card:

  • Free parking for one year.
  • Membership fee of Rs. 1000/- refundable on purchase of Rs. 20,000/- and above at TGIP once a year.
  • 4 free visit to the Worlds Of Wonder for a family of four.( Without rides)
  • Assured Gift Voucher.
  • 10-20% discount at the selected outlets of TGIP Partner Stores.
  • Free invites to be sent for vents at TGIP organized by IRPPL.

It was discontinued on 14th November 2011. But now TGIP has again launched its loyalty card on 14th June 2012 for limited period as a part of Shopping Festival.

Features of new loyalty membership

  • Membership fee of Rs. 4000/-
  • Free parking for one year.
  • 10% discount at selected outlets.
  • 5% discount at selected F& B
  • 20% discount on events organized by irppl.


WOW Membership:


WOW loyalty membership was introduced in year 2008. Since that it has undergone many changes. There are 3 different types of cards-

  • Platinum
  • Gold
  • Silver

Different type of card with different benefits.
In 2008
In this year there were six types of membership –

  • Platinum Individual – Rs 2000
  • Platinum Family(2 Adults 2 Kids) – Rs 5000
  • Gold Individual – Rs 1500
  • Gold Family(4 members)  – Rs 3500
  • Silver Individual – Rs 1000
  • Silver Family(4 members)  – Rs 2000
  • Additional member – Rs 1000 per member


Features of Platinum Card

  • Free unlimited entry for one year.
  • All rides / attractions free.
  • Free parking
  • Guest who comes with the card holder gets 30% discount on entry fees.


Features of Gold Card

  • Free entry from Monday to Saturday for one year.
  • All rides / attractions free.
  • Free parking
  • Guest who comes with the card holder gets 30% discount on entry fees.


Features of Silver Card

  • Free entry from Monday to Friday for one year.
  • All rides / attractions free.
  • Free parking.
  • Guest who comes with the card holder gets 30% discount on entry fees.

In 2009
In this year there were seven types of membership –

  • Platinum Individual – Rs 2000
  • Platinum Family(2 Adults 2 Kids) – Rs 5000
  • Gold Individual – Rs 1500
  • Gold Family(4 members)  – Rs 4000
  • Silver Individual – Rs 1250
  • Silver Family(4 members)  – Rs 2500
  • Dosti Masti (4 members)  – Rs 4000
  • Additional member – Rs 1250 per member
  • Rs 1000 was extra if the card holder wanted free parking for whole year.

[Author: Ms. Archana Browne, Former Vice President - Sales and Marketing of IRPPL (International Recreation Parks Pvt. Ltd. - World of Wonders]]

Tags

Amusement Park, Recreation