Busters was conceived to be a true and full-fledged FEC offering. The concept was created to introduce world class gaming, entertainment and leisure formats to the metro markets, and tap into the FEC potential of Tier II & III markets across India.
The brand offers the best hang out experience by bringing together world class gaming and entertainment equipment under an ambience that is at par with the best international brands in the world.
“FECs certainly change dynamics for a mall, when there is extra emphasis given to a user’s experience, right from the mall development phase. Experiences like roller coaster, large adventure rides involve a high degree of initial planning, but the results are equally good for the malls,” says Abhishek Jain, CMD, Busters.
“We develop our centres to be true FECs that offer the best in gaming and entertainment experiences for various age groups. We are customer-centric in our designs, gaming choices, and most importantly, pricing. Our centres offer a wide price range to ensure a lower entry barrier and more choice,” he adds.
The bowling arena, rides and an exclusive selection of arcade games are the key attractions at Busters. The brand believes in changing key attractions from centre to centre, depending on the access to space – including vertical space/ height – that they have.
“Busters is a very adaptive FEC business. With mall sizes increasing, FECs are gaining in prominence too. Brand Busters is evaluating options in the 20,000 to 65,000 sq.ft. space, where the concept is going to be totally diff erent, in addition to the regular entertainment and gaming options. We are developing some bespoke rides for these centers, and a special kids’ format that mixes science with fun. After an in-depth study of the mall and
catchment, we will develop the right FEC mix that will work,” says Jain.
Technology Maintenance and Safety
Every Busters centre has a minimum of two technicians at all times who are backed by technical heads based at the brand’s headquarters.
“Our technical heads have more than 40 years of experience in the industry who constantly train and update the rest of technical team. All our equipment is under constant supervision and is checked on a regular basis for damages and repairs,” explains Aditya Konka, CEO, Busters.
Busters have about 12 to 18 people for every 10,000 sq.ft. centre. The staff is trained regularly as there is constant movement of machines happening within and between the centers, every month to maximize user experience.
Investment & Revenue
Busters is a fully self-funded venture at this point. Currently, the brand is operating in Mantra Mall and L and T Next Galleria Mall, Hyderabad, two centers are under fit-out at GSM Mall (Hyderabad) and GT Mall (Bengaluru).
“We will end this year with a capital outflow of close to Rs 60 crore and we have another Rs 120 crore earmarked for next year. It is difficult to say at this point what will be the optimum capital for Year 3, but the promoters are keen on investing in and building Busters further, making it a dominant player in the market,” says Jain.
Currently, Busters has three operational centers, both in Hyderabad, but they are on an aggressive expansion spree. There are four more centers under fit-out. In total the brand boasts of 19 centers, including operational, under fit-out and upcoming centers.
“Busters is planning to operate five more properties by December 2018 and close this year with eight centres. For 2019, we already have 11 signed and we are evaluating several other sites across the country. We are constantly looking to expand both organically and inorganically and are hoping to touch 30 centres by 2020,” says Jain.
“We do not have any standalone formats in the pipeline, but we are open to the idea,” he concludes.