Less capacity but higher quality increases attendance and revenues

This article title probably sounds like a definite oxymoron. But the movie theater industry is proving it isn't.

Back in 2012, a cinema in Henderson, Nevada made what was back then a radical and game changing move. There was an 8-screen cinema that had been closed for several years. The Galaxy Cinema Group took it over and tore out all 2,000 seats and replaced them with luxury full reclining seats, decreasing the seating capacity by almost 2/3rds down to only 700 seats. They also added additional menu items including alcohol.

The response from moviegoers was amazing. Overall admissions tripled compared to right before the theater had closed.

So in 2014, AMC Theaters started a trial with the same approach - tear out old seats, replace them with luxury leather electric lounge chairs, improve the food selection and add alcohol. The results were comparable so in 2015 AMC started rolling out a program to reseat all their theaters and upgrade the food and beverage offerings.

Since then, other theater chains have started reseating their theaters and improving their food and drink offerings, achieving similar results.

So, what does this have to do with community leisure venues such as FECs and bowling-based venues? It's quite simple. Today, quality not quantity wins. Those venues that can offer a premium, a High Fidelity experience that includes quality food and alcohol are the winners. Success comes by offering a higher quality experience rather than a larger and mediocre one.

We thank John Sullivan and his OzSeeker blog for much of information for the above article. You can sign up for John's email notice of this blogs by clicking here and going to the bottom right of the webpage.