Timezone to launch new formats for different age groups

Having bought over the stake from Shoppers Stop and Louisiana Investment and Finance, Timezone Entertainment will now roll out different formats of its family entertainment centres to cater to customers of different age groups.

Timezone Entertainment, which runs 24 mall-based family entertainment centres in India, acquired 50 per cent stake from the joint venture partners recently. Now Timezone India is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Entertainment and Education Group (TEEG) based out of Australia, which operates centres at 250 locations in seven countries.

“It is part of our global strategy. Timezone New Zealand too has bought over the stake from its JV partner. In India, this will help us launch some of the concepts and formats which are successful globally and take forward the evolution of the brand in the market,” said Sonaal Chopra, Group CEO, The Entertainment and Education Group (TEEG).

The company plans to bring Timezone Play, a format for 0 to 6 year-old kids and Kingpin, the format for young adults aged between 20 and 35 years. The Timezone format currently being operated in India caters to children in the age group of 7 to 12 years.

“Timezone Play was launched globally in 2016 and we have received better-than-expected respon-se in several markets. The revenues, EBITDA and Return on Capital Employed (ROCE) from these centres are encouraging. The-se centres need 5,000 to 10,000 sq ft area compared to 8000 to 10,000 sq ft regular Timezone centres. We will be rolling out the format this year,” he said.

Kingpin requires a larger space of 25,000 to 40,000 sq ft and the company also plans to bring a format for the corporate clients sometime in the future. These formats require and investment of 1.2 to 1.7 million Australian dollar per centre. Apart from the new centres, the company is also opening 12 more Timezone centres with an aim to double revenues by 2019 December.

“In the immediate short-term we are spending 10 million Australian dollar in the Indian market and will be pumping in funds as required,” he said.

According to him, Timezone has reported a like-to-like growth of 15 per cent in 2017. At the company level, it is profitable. In the short-term, the focus is on becoming sustainable and profitable. In the medium to long term, it will scale up and pursue growth. However, the focus will remain on sustainable and profitable growth.

In India, FunCity and Timezone are two major players in the mall-based family entertainment business. According to Chopra, premier entertainment concepts of international standards are well received by Indian customers and Timezone finds this encouraging about the market.