Entertainment complexes for children multiply in HCM City

Monday, Oct 13, 2014 17:59

Children play games at tiNiTown, a recreation park in HCM City. Entertainment complexes for children are booming in this southern city. — Photo webtretho.com

HCM CITY (Biz Hub) ─ Entertainment complexes for children are booming in this southern city as investors have poured hundreds of billions of dong into them in recent years, according to VnExpress online.

The Nkid Company in January launched tiNiTown, a 2,500sq.m recreation park in Tan Phu District, bringing the number of tiNiWorld leisure centres nationwide to 20, worth more than VND200 billion, or about US$10 million.

"The children's entertainment market in Viet Nam is now valued at about $3 billion, accounting for 60 per cent of the total revenues of all businesses dealing with children, including those in health and education," said Nkid CEO Thomas Ngo. "With an increasing population, this market truly has potential."

However, Ngo said that the company is facing many redoubtable competitors.

For instance, the Himlam Vikid Company opened the 22,000sq.m Vietopia leisure area in District 7, with an investment capital of VND520 billion, or $24.76 million. This centre provides occupational models that provide knowledge to children.

Similarly, KizWorld Company launched an indoor entertainment park for children aged between three and 16 last December, at the Parkson Flemington trade centre in District 11. Here children can play roles as doctors, firefighters, bakers or car designers.

Property giant Vingroup also runs Vin kids centres at its Vincom trade buildings in Ha Noi and HCM City, helping children up to 15 years of age develop skills.

Ngo said that investors must be very flexible while putting money in a market which has a fast-changing customer demand, and that development in terms of size and convenience is a prerequisite for dealing with entertainment areas for children.

Vietopia director Nguyen Que Anh said that reading rooms, Internet facilities or places of relaxation for mothers will now be added incentives at every leisure centre.

Market observers said that customers now prefer complexes measuring hundreds to thousands of square metres, to the 100sq.m areas with children's slides and ball rooms that were popular several years ago.

Many customers said that they prefer to go to large parks that offer diversified ways of buying tickets. They can pay all-in prices of VND180,000 to VND280,000 ($8.6-$13.3), or choose admission tickets of VND30,000 to VND80,000 ($1.4-$3.8) and pay additional fees for different games.

Phuong, a mother in HCM City, told VnExpress that she often takes her two children, a six-year-old and a four-year-old, to an entertainment park in District 1 which offers an admission ticket for VND80,000 ($3.8) per person, while a substitute park for smaller areas charges VND40,000 to VND50,000 ($1.9-$2.4).

It takes six to eight years for the large leisure centres to break even, compared with two to three years for the small parks, due to the difference in operational costs, according to market observers.

A Vietopia source revealed to VnExpress that the monthly operation costs of that centre are between VND3.5 billion and VND4 billion ($166,670-$190,480) on average. ─ VNS

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