In India, the millennial is transforming the existence and sustaining scenario of several businesses. Therefore, it might be the right time to come up with such a business where entertainment can serve as your brand’s primary USP.
A real-life entertainment game or commonly known as an escape room as a business investment is now taking off in style in modern India. It offers a great platform for young entrepreneurs who are looking for a unique concept.
In India, the millennial is transforming the existence and sustaining scenario of several businesses. Therefore, it might be the right time to come up with such a business where entertainment can serve as your brand’s primary USP. So, escape rooms can be the perfect opportunity for a new business.
The concept of an Escape Room
Escape Room is a team-based live escape experience where the challenge for the players is to race against time and get out of a theme-based room in 60 minutes. Locked inside a mysterious space, the players are required to devise an escape plan using logic, finding hints and clues and solving puzzles in the defined space.
The players may need to do some physical tasks along with mental brainstorming to come out victorious. They are perfect for family outings, corporate team-building, or just having fun with your friends.
There are a multitude of options available when it comes to the narrative/theme of the room in which the players get to play the protagonists of the story.
Escape Rooms are not only high on fun quotient but also enhance communication and social skills. It is a highly interactive game, which requires cooperation from all the players in order to achieve victory.
The most appealing aspect of escape rooms is that they are for all age groups which makes it one of the widest markets to tap into India.
India: An evolving market
The real-life escape games have become tremendously popular amongst the Indian millennials in the last four years. This popularity is driven by youngsters that are always looking for fun ways to spend time with friends and interesting activities.
The Indian market has everything to offer that a business needs to nurture and flourish. The market is customer-ready as everyone is looking to do something new every weekend. The population in the country is very experimental and loves to indulge in newer experiences. That’s why investing in something unique like escape rooms could be a profitable option.
In an interaction with Franchise India, the Founders of Mystery Rooms said, “The business is quite diverse in nature and has witnessed a transformation in terms of technology and application over the past few years. The human desire for curiosity is a never-ending chronicle; hence this segment is on a rise as it is tapping the same human desire of exploring something unique and extraordinary.”
Every escape room is targeting the corporate crowd that needs a break from the daily grind. It’s an entertainment option that goes beyond the regular clubbing and dining out for millennials.
Starting an Escape Room business
In India, escape rooms might be at a nascent stage but it’s high on the novelty factor. Escape rooms can prove to be a moderate cost venture for entrepreneurs. Besides setting up the premise, upgrading themes and technology are the only primary expenditure.
For starting an escape room business, you need:
Location: If you choose a bad location, it will be more difficult for your escape room to succeed. While if you are in a very densely populated area, you may fill up your slots easily, even when you are only catering to 1% of the population. Before selecting a location, ask yourself questions like, How many escape room companies are already operating in that area? How expensive is the rent? Is it zoned commercial or residential? Is it in a tourist zone?
Market position: What is the present scenarios of the market at that location is also a decisive factor. If your market position is good, you can certainly obtain incredible profits. You may also have very different occupancy rates depending on whether you are a market leader or not. You can charge a higher price when you have a strong following.
Know Your Target Audience: Escape rooms can attract a lot of revenue, provided that they are designed according to the target audience. An escape room that is built for kids won’t attract adults and vice versa. Therefore, one also has to think about the type of clientele they wish to target, meaning whether their games are meant for team building, simple entertainment such as movies or for a more theatrical experience.
Staff: Dependable staff is important, and the right game master can make or break a player’s escape room experience. You need staff that is comfortable working strange hours and have dynamic personalities to pump up the players.
New game theme: In order to build an ordinary room into an amazing escape, entrepreneurs should think of interesting, demanding and attractive themes. With so many great games out there, players are not going to be satisfied with poor quality puzzles, flimsy props, boring storylines, etc. You should take the time and effort to design an engaging escape game that your players will remember and promote to their friends.
Franchise: A lucrative business model
Escape Room franchise offers a profitable business opportunity for aspiring entrepreneurs. The franchise model is a lucrative business opportunity to start with entrepreneurship.
“We believe franchising is the fastest way to branch out the concept to untapped markets having huge potential to grow and thrive at a sustainable rate,” Mystery Rooms’ Founders added.
A franchise brand provides many added benefits to the franchisee while the brand also gets a few more advantages of offering franchise opportunities to like-minded entrepreneurs. As both of them, the franchisor and the franchisee, know the potential of an escape room business, their union to achieve the success binds them together and makes franchising a more sought-after model for both of them.
There are various escape room brands in India that are operating on the franchise model. One such brand, Mystery Rooms offers two types of franchise models. These include:
Franchisee Owned Company Operated (FOCO)
Area required - 2000 sq ft
Total Investment in Maiden cities - Rs 36-37 Lakh
Payback period - 1 year 5 months
Average ROI - 75%
Franchisee Owned Franchisee Operated (FOFO)
Area required - 2000 sq ft
Total Investment in maiden cities - Rs 48-49 Lakh
Franchise Fee - Rs 10 Lakh
Royalty - 15%
Payback period - 1 year 1 month
Average ROI - 132%
Note that the above statistics could vary depending upon different Escape Room brands and their offerings. The investment scale and the branch size can also vary according to the location.