Pinnacle Entertainment Group, along with our strategic partners, including Brunswick Bowling, have successfully collaborated on new centers and bowling modernizations in the last few years alone. We assist both these bowling centers to add arcades and attractions. The Modern Redemption Game Room, Food and Beverage, and Bowling are the three pillars the modern bowling center is built on, with each contributing a comparable amount to the bottom line. We assist in teaching our proven operating system to locations wishing to own and operate their own games, or bringing a high quality, qualified redemption game operator to the table and assisting with negotiating of terms.
Pinnacle applies its FEC planning, development, and operating experience to assist bowling center owners in creating Bowling Family Entertainment Centers or Hybrid Centers.
In today’s market, there are 4 major types of bowling centers:
- Bowling Entertainment Centers (BECs)
- Bowling Entertainment Centers (BEC’s) are designed to provide entertainment in the form of bowling and other attractions such as arcades, laser tag, go carts, miniature golf, and party rooms in addition to the venues found at traditional centers. The Arcade or more accurately the Modern Redemption Game Room is nearly always the #1 attraction. When a secondary attraction, like Laser Tag is added, the facility attracts a larger customer base. The food offerings at FEC’s are enhanced to match the atmosphere and beverage service still plays a strong role. This model can be achieved by modernizing a traditional center or by building new and is a very popular and growing model.
- Traditional Bowling Centers
- Primarily focused on bowling, these centers typically include a dated game room, billiards, pro shop and bar. Beverage sales, especially alcohol play a strong role and there is a simple snack bar for food. This model worked for years when bowling proprietors made their living based on league play, which was centered around middle aged and older males. 25% of these types of centers have closed over the last 15 years. In some markets where leagues are strong, 70% or more of the bowling revenue, this model is viable. However, in most markets this model is struggling. Overall league revenue has declined from 70% to 40% over the last 30 years.
- Boutique centers are focused primarily on entertainment and socialization for adults. They typically include full service, upscale food and beverage. Food and Beverage sales account for more than 50% of the revenue, with bowling second as the primary source of entertainment. Other entertainment offerings in these facilities include live music, pool, and other adult centered games. There is rarely an arcade in these types of centers, but in some cases it can be profitable.
- Hybrid Centers combine two distinct bowling venues, essentially a Bowling Entertainment Center and Boutique Center in one, with complementary entertainment venues including arcades, laser tag, go carts, and miniature golf. When done correctly, the arcade is the number 1 attraction. These facilities also include enhanced food and beverage service, and are designed to cater to both families and an active adult market through the use of two different environments under one roof. The boutique section is very appealing to adults, specifically corporate events which are a very lucrative market. The Bowling Entertainment Center section is geared towards families, not to be confused with children focused. A Hybrid Center should be a facility that all members of the family look forward to visiting. This is the fastest growing segment of new centers in the United States.
Bowling is thriving! Consider these facts:
- Bowling is still the number one participatory sport in the US, 70 million people bowl at least once a year, that is double the number of people who play golf!
- The average age of a bowler is 29
- 49% of bowlers are women
Surely the above numbers are driven by casual bowlers, not league bowlers. The good news is that casual bowlers spend 4-5 times as much as a league bowler. However, attracting a large amount of these customers is only possible in a facility that appeals to their tastes.