02 May 2018 | Blog Posts
This article was originally featured in the May 2018 issue of InterGame.
Over 18 months since the Player One Amusement Group brand launched, parent company Cineplex is very happy with its progress.
Player One operates the Playdium chain of family entertainment centres across the US and its native Canada. The company continues to grow its arsenal of total solutions to better serve its guests, which is certainly one of the benefits of working in one of the world’s most vibrant markets. “The amusement industry in the US is healthy and we are continuing to see growth over the last three or four years – particularly within the FEC and LBE segments,” said John Kolliniatis, vice president of P1AG, as the company name is abbreviated.
“There are a lot of very innovative things happening in the amusement space and we are seeing many of our customers building impressive venues and improving guests’ entertainment experiences.”
Over the past few years the company has undergone a series of strategic mergers and acquisitions that has helped it to build upon its infrastructure and expertise. “This has set us up as one of North America’s leading amusement and entertainment providers. We understand consumer demands are continuously evolving and so we make a point of keeping a close eye on new trends and are testing emerging products early on in their life cycle to ensure we are providing our customers with the best solutions to help them grow their business,” he said.
The US market has undeniably changed in the past 18 months. P1AG has ridden that wave and has seen a great deal of expansion in a short time, with the company operating coast to coast as both an operator and a distributor. Kolliniatis said the company is optimistic about the latest projects in its pipeline.
“P1AG’s focus remains working collaboratively with our customers and providing them with ongoing support to optimize their facility operations. Through our own operations, we have ample knowledge and data that allows us to help our customers make the right decisions for their business, regardless of what segment they operate in,” he explained.
At present this is focused on the US and Canada, which, he said, are very similar when it comes to the needs and expectations of customers within the amusement space. In both markets he said that ticket dispensing amusement games and instant merchandise games definitely lead the way.
He believes that the success of these centres comes down to two things. “Firstly, the entertainment value that players derive from the amusement games and attractions within the facilities and also the prize merchandise available to be won. Merchandising is very important.”
He said the biggest challenge the company has faced in recent times as been around the acquisitions it made over the past 18 months and in unifying all these brands under the P1AG umbrella.
“I believe that the launch has been a huge success and we are very pleased with the recognition of the Player One name within our industry,” he added.
After more than half a year since the IAAPA show in Orlando, US, the company has had a chance to see how this will perform out in the market, but he said that this isn’t always as clear as one might think.
“In terms of amusement products, P1AG represents all major amusement manufacturers’ products. While there are many new products showcased at IAAPA, it can take some time for these products to come to market. Our focus is less on any one individual game or attraction, but rather on determining the right amusement mix for our individual customer business needs. P1AG’s focus at IAAPA was to provide expert consultation to existing and prospective customers to ensure that they are making effective long-term business decisions,” he said.
North America is possibly the most difficult place in the world for the industry in terms of competing with home gaming, as it grows ever more advanced by the day. However, Kolliniatis doesn’t see it as case of “one or the other.” It would seem this town is big enough for the both of them.
“There is a place for both home entertainment and out-of-home entertainment. The key here is to provide players with an experience that cannot be replicated by a home entertainment system. At P1AG, we recognize that creating highly social and interactive amusement environments will result in memorable entertainment experiences for our players,” he said.
The company has a very mixed customer and location base so it is not easy to indicate where the best levels of demand are being experienced and it has reported growth is evident in most sectors, but notably in bowling centres, FECs and trampoline locations.
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