Tenpin bowling centre operator Ten Entertainment returns to profit

Tenpin bowling centre operator Ten Entertainment Group has returned to profit, as pent-up demand pushes consumers back to bowling alleys and arcades.

Tenpin at Castlegate Way, Dudley
Tenpin at Castlegate Way, Dudley

The group, which has 46 family entertainment centres including at Dudley, Stafford and Telford, swung from a more than £17 million loss in 2020 into the green zone with a post-tax profit of £4 million in the year to December 26.

The London-listed entertainment group said sales momentum has rolled into the first few months of this year, although it is expected to “temper” slightly with the return of foreign holidays over spring and summer.

Sales jumped nearly 20 per cent over the 12 months, from £36.3m to £67.5m. However, the group is still more than £16m behind its pre-pandemic sales figure.

After spending the first half of the year laying down the groundwork for its reopening, after over a year of pandemic-induced closures, the group completed four major refurbishments over the year. Ten also pivoted its attention to other entertainment activities popular among Brits, including karaoke, escape rooms and laser tag.

Expansion is now on the horizon, the group confirmed in its full-year results this morning, with four new centres in the pipeline for this year, as well as seven refurbishments.

CEO Graham Blackwell said: "2021 has been a hugely successful year despite Covid-related closures and restrictive trading. We have raised our game in every aspect of customer experience. Customers have embraced our highly successful competitive socialising model.

"I am very pleased with the return to profitability after such a challenging first half with our growth principally driven by increased footfall.

"I am grateful to our teams for delivering a step-change in service under difficult circumstances. We have recognised this exceptional performance through enhanced rewards and recognition for our people.

"Since the pandemic, there has been a significant change in the market, with customers wanting more from their time together.

"We have demonstrated that we are perfectly positioned to deliver that value for money and fun leisure experience for our customers.

"I am looking forward to 2022 where we will open four new state-of-the-art centres for our customers to enjoy and we will continue to invest in a first-class customer experience.

"We have started the year with strong momentum despite the inflationary headwinds and we are set to achieve further growth and record profitability in 2022."

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