Please visit our new website and home to our blog: www.phoenixamusements.com. We have a new look and functionality but still have all our historical articles of this blog there. We’ll keep this site up a bit longer, but invite you to our new home!
MODEX is coming to Atlanta this March. Phoenix Amusements has been supplying entertainment for hospitality suites or traffic builders to clients for years at the MODEX show. But, what is the MODEX tradeshow? According to MODEXShow.com, “MODEX 2014® is the industry’s newest expo for the manufacturing and supply chain industries. It’s where the best and brightest thinkers in the supply chain gather to discuss the trends of today and the challenges of tomorrow. At MODEX you will meet 800 of the leading providers and see their solutions in person, in action”. This year they will also combine the Supply Chain & Transportation USA conference (SCT). For those in Supply Chain Management, this must be heaven!
It’s a pretty big show with an estimated 20,000 attendees and over 800 exhibitors on 180,000 square foot show floor. This year its being held at Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center on March 17th through 20th.
According to the show managers, MHI, “Thirty-Six Percent of MODEX attendees plan on spending $1 million or more on Manufacturing and Supply Chain solutions in the next 18 months.” In doing some research on the show, I came across this video of one of the 800 providers exhibiting at the show. I’m truly amazed at the wonders of technology and production capabilities in today’s industries. The video demonstrates how this company has integrated 3D printing in the production of steel products. Did I mention how much I am fascinated with anything involving the printing process? Watch and enjoy!
Usually businesses trying to increase their brand awareness or obtaining qualified leads will exhibit at trade shows by purchasing a booth space on the expo floor.
If you find that you just:
- don’t have the right personnel to man the booth,
- don’t want to spend the money or,
- just don’t have the time to plan a thorough marketing plan for an effective exhibit,
why not think outside the box or the booth!
Here are top five alternatives to participate at conferences outside of the expo floor:
Whether its a cocktail reception, customer appreciation game night, or the dinner; get your name and sales force out there! Plan a small cocktail reception in a hotel suite and give a small, brief presentation. Whatever it may be, make it fun!
2. Book space across the street or in the parking lot.
Recently at the E3 Show this year, Ouya decided to rent out part of the parking lot across the street from the Los Angeles Convention Center and put up banners to attract passer-byers. Not sure it created more sales, but it did create free publicity.
3. Engage Social Media with a targeted goal
New Balance recently launched a relay-race mobile app promotion in New York promoting their flagship store. Integrating running and batons in the app resulted in 75 million media impressions along with engaging over 1000 app downloads along with exceeding their goal of selling $250,000 in first month (40% increase of their retail sales goal). This was not used at a tradeshow, but the premise still applies.
4. Snag a speaking role at the tradeshow.
Have someone from your company speak at the show. This shows the attendees that you and your company have been vetted by the show committee or public relations firm in charge of the tradeshow and of course that you are a thought leader in your industry. And don’t forget to have your sales or development team available in full force to assist in any questions.
5. Become a greeter at the show
Engage the attendees with energetic greeters dressed with your logo’d shirts that hand out logo’d bags to attendees which include a USB loaded with your company info and contact person. Include a qr code on the greeter’s shirt to drive attendees to a custom company page!
Even though you haven’t spent money on a booth and its related costs, you still have invested time and money in the above. You typically will not close the deal at the show, but in the followup. A must is to schedule a follow up meeting or call as soon as possible while the tradeshow buzz is still fresh in the attendees’ mind.
If you need help with your appreciation night or VIP suite, we’re here to help! Good luck and let us know if our suggestions helped you!
Our company name is Phoenix Amusements, but we’re based in Atlanta, Georgia. I can’t tell you how many times a day we are asked, “Why are you named Phoenix, but not here in Phoenix, Arizona?” Our founder named our company after the Greek mythical bird, the Phoenix. The story is told that the Phoenix rises through the burning ashes and is reborn. This Greek story is similar to the burning of Atlanta when General Sherman’s Union Army burnt Atlanta to the grown during the Civil War and then rose to become one of the leading cities of the nation. This is why our founder named our company, Phoenix Amusements.
As a result of the numerous queries, my curiosity was peaked when I decided to write on this topic. I did a little more research about companies named Phoenix and here is what I found:
Currently, there are 257 of companies registered with the Georgia Secretary of State office with “Phoenix” in their company name.
- Besides Phoenix, the capital of Arizona, there are:
- Phoenix, Colorado (Gilpin County) – in the Rockies west of Denver
- Phoenix, Georgia (Putnam County) – southeast of Atlanta
- Phoenix, Illinois (Cook County) – in the greater Chicago metro region
- Phoenix, Louisiana (Plaquemines Parish) – in the Mississippi Delta, south of New Orleans
- Phoenix, Maryland (Baltimore County) – north of Baltimore
- Phoenix, Michigan, (Keweenaw County) – in the Upper Peninsula
- Phoenix, Mississippi ( Yazoo County) – northwest of Jackson
- Phoenix, New Jersey (Middlesex County, NJ) – northeast of Brunswick
- Phoenix, New York (Oswego County) – northwest of Syracuse
- Phoenix, North Carolina (Brunswick County – northwest of Wilmington
- Phoenix, Oregon, (Jackson County) – just outside Medford
- Phoenix, South Carolina (Greenwood County) – North of Augusta, GA
- Phoenix, Texas (Bexar County) – just outside of San Antonio, TX
There are five states (and Arizona is not one of them!) that have a city named Phenix:
- Rhode Island
Other countries with the name of Phoenix:
- Vacoas-Phoenix, Mauritius
- Phoenix, Durban, South Africa
- Phoenix Islands, Kiribati
- Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland
- Phoenix Concert Theatre, Toronto, Canada
- Phoenix Cinema, London, England
- Phoenix, British Columbia, Canada
- La Fenice (The Phoenix), an opera house in Venice, Italy
- Camp Phoenix, US Army military camp located in Kabul, Afghanistan
Just a little trivia for you to enjoy!
We get this call about once a week or more; “I want to open a game room” or “do you do game rooms?” In answer to the first question, we always ask another question, “where will your game room be and what’s your demographics?” The standard reply is “I’m in whatever city, and there’s nothing for the kids to do.” Or “I have this big building that I need to fill.” At that point, we realize that the eager new business owner has not done a true assessment of the proposed business nor a thorough due diligence. Most gamerooms or a family fun center (FEC) will not survive without a hefty amount of startup cash. In the past, operators would supply the games but would share in a percentage of funds received in the games. An operator in the game industry purchases the arcade games, maintains or fixes them and collects the money or data. Unfortunately, most operators do not wish to invest such a large amount of money for an arcade room startup, especially if the business does not have a detailed business plan with projected revenue and an advertising/marketing plan. We traditionally use Dave N Buster’s game room as an example. The smaller upright arcade games like Ms PacMan or Donkey Kong cost about $4,000-$5000. While the larger sports shooting games like Super Shot basketball will run $7,000-$8,000 each (not including sales tax nor delivery). And the new flat screen racing games cost about $10,000-$12,000 each. now add the new card readers to each game. This system allows you to program each game and retrieves customer playing info such as time of play, duration and spend rate. That system would cost about $25,000 to $30,000 and does not include training or custom cards. Some of the card reader systems can tie into your POS system too.
A Dave N Buster’s facility typically has about 200 games in their game rooms and they boast about their Million Dollar Midway that includes traditional arcade, redemption, and simulators along with party rooms and a full scale restaurant and bar. Even if you use a low average of $4,000 per game and have 200 games, the cost would be $800,000 for the games only. How many business owners do you know would be willing to invest $800k in assets for someone else’s business without seeing a detailed business plan. Keep in mind, that Dave N Buster’s definitely gets a price break since they purchase for over 50 locations. Most of our prospects are only opening one location at a time. If you’re looking for new games, distributors have a full line from all manufactures. Betson and Brady Distributing are two of the most reputable companies serving the south and east areas.
Let’s say that you’re willing to have used games in your new arcade game room, but you’ll purchase them on your own. There’s hundreds of used arcade games on Ebay today not to mention the industry auctions. Quite a few of the listing look like new games. One of the questions you may ask yourself is “Why are there so many operators selling so much equipment? Even selling their more newer pieces? One of the main reasons would be that they are not making money. The majority of the public owns smartphones or tablets that have games they can play on them already. The latest number for 2013 smartphone users in the U.S is 181.4 million. So why pay to play a game? Another reason could be that their local government has changed their regulations. Arcade games are part of the gaming industry and is a regulated and taxed industry. Each state has different regulations and license requirements. An operator must be licensed in your state to be able to work with you for a game room business.
Even after all the above, you still want to proceed. You’ve purchased your games, have a location and necessary licenses and are open for business. But a couple of your games are not working now. They worked when you bought them but one has a flickering screen, one has a black screen, another has no sound and then someone stuffed pennies into the coin slot. Most used games are sold “as is” with no warranties so you’ll have to find some to fix them or you may have done your homework and have hired a skilled technician as part of your staff. Some fixes are quite easy to a skilled technician, but some could be costly and time intensive to repair. Some of the older games like Galaga or Donkey Kong are over 20 years old and parts could be hard to come by. Replacing an old tube monitor can run about $300 or if you swap out for a flat screen you’ll need a signal converter, new framing plus the flat screen. All of this could run about $500-$700. Keep in mind, these costs are for a 18″ monitor, the cost for the bigger screens are substantially more. Parts and repairs should definitely be a line item in your detailed expenses.
As with Dave N Buster’s, a game room will not survive on games alone. Food, liquor and other entertainment is a must in your business mix. You’ll notice that FEC’s include food plus laser tag, rock climbing or inflatables or a combination of all. Even if you’re not opening a facility on the scope of a Dave N Buster’s, include an additional revenue stream. Don’t want to have a commercial kitchen and all the regulations involved, think about vending machines. The technological breakthroughs in the newest vending machines are amazing and take up a small footprint in your venue.
There’s so many factors to consider but furthermost, we suggest that you do a tremendous amount of prep work and due diligence to ensure that your new business will be a success. We’ve created a checklist for those who’d like to proceed into the game room industry to help you in your venture. Click here to download! And if you’re not looking to open a game room business, but need a temporary game room setup for your next conference, we definitely can help you. Give us a call 866-767-4420 or fill out the below form.
Just about every event planning coordinator gets stumped with finding the right game rental company in the city of their event or meeting that they are planning. Each major metropolitan city touts a who’s who in the game rental industry. But if this is your first time searching for such a vendor, it can be daunting. Don’t fret. Atlanta is a hotbed of rental companies that rent cool games.
Despite the fact that we at Phoenix Amusements have been located in Atlanta since 1959 and have done thousands of events in the Atlanta metropolitan area, our customers often times want to know who some of the other game rental companies are in the area. And with our continued focus on transparency and an extremely high standard of ethics at Phoenix Amusements, we are posting a few game rental companies to consider if you’re looking to rent cool games for that special event .
- Amusement Masters: Located in Tucker, GA providing a range of game rentals along with inflatables since 1999.
- Burgess Amusements: Offers full line of carnival game rides such as Ferris Wheels and Carousel along with game rentals.
- Atlanta Special Events: Focuses on talent entertainment along with game rentals and audio visual products since 2002.
- American Family Day: Specializes in company picnics with catering since 1985.
Here are a few companies you may consider as you go about planning your special event and researching event rental companies for Atlanta events. Although I can’t say these companies are “the best” of Atlanta per se, they do have an established history in the area.
Of course, if you have upcoming company events, an exhibition or just need cool games to play, we at Phoenix Amusements are always ready to discuss or help you with fun party ideas.
Classic arcade video games are considered to be those created in the first years of the birth of coin-operated video games and is considered the “golden-age” of video arcade games. A few famous titles include:
- Ms. Pacman-Manufactured by Midway Manufacturing Co. in 1981
- Interesting tidbit: Original Ms. Pacman cabinets have the artwork painted on the sides. However, on the last production run of the game, adhesive sticker art was used instead of paint.
- Galaga-Manufactured by Namco in 1981
- Interesting tidbit: Namco also produced very small versions of these games, about the size of a 17-inch monitor, for buses and airplanes.
- Asteroids-Manufactured by Atari in 1979
- Interesting tidbit: After its release in the US, many arcade operators had to make larger coin boxes for the games so they could hold all of the quarters that these machines collected.
- Donkey Kong-Manufactured by Nintendo in 1981.
- Interesting tidbit: Mario Bros and Super Mario are spin offs from Donkey Kong.
A true classic arcade, The Galaxy Game, the earliest known coin-operated arcade video game, made its debut on the campus of Stanford University in 1971. While Atari’s Pong was quick to follow in the mid 70′s. Our family was the first in our neighborhood to own the home console version of Pong.
With the renewed interest in classic arcades, knock offs have been built as multicade games which include several or even hundreds of games all in one video game cabinet. Unfortunately, these type of units are not legal. Anyone selling or renting these types of units are typically doing so illegally. The unit is created, by using either old, bootlegged or counterfeit software, and/or hardware boards, usually made in China. Most of these games are cheaply constructed, have questionable quality control and warranties, and the fact that the person or firm who are selling or renting them knows they are doing so illegally should tell you something about the honesty and reputation of that company or individual. Namco continues to make their classic games and definitely do not allow their games to be paired with any other manufacturer’s game. Do you think that Apple would allow you to use the iPhone apps on a Samsung phone? Its pretty much the same thing.
Depending on your location and your event dynamics, a traditional original classic arcade game rental will range from $350-$500 per game and may not include a delivery or pickup fee. Keep in mind, this range will vary depending on your location If your event is in a location that does not have any or just a couple of game rental companies, that rental company can charge you whatever price they deem appropriate. It is a very specialized niche industry. Most of the famous classic arcade video games were built in the 1980′s meaning they are at least 30 years old today and would be considered an antique or treasured collectible. The fact that a company has the video games much less that they are in working condition is amazing! Through the years, the number of technicians that can effectively work on the classic arcades have dwindled. So if you find a company that does rent and can repair their games, you have found a gem of a supplier.
Contact us if you need more information for renting these games for your event!
I recently stumbled upon a new tv series called “River Monsters“. The episode I first watched was when the angler was fishing in Florida for bull sharks in inland rivers. He caught a few small sharks but then caught a huge grouper. Grouper is a fish that looks pretty prehistoric and not particularly appealing. Since that episode, we have been watching regularly!
If you’re not familiar with grouper, its typically a saltwater fish and can get rather large. The one caught in this episode was estimated at 300 pounds! I don’t remember anyone back home catching one that big, but you never know. The only reason grouper would be in those waters was if the water was brackish I grew up in Louisiana and we sometimes ate fried grouper, which I remember to be a very tasty fish. If you’re looking for a good recipe, try Paula’s Deans Video for Fried Grouper Fingers. Since I now live in the Atlanta area, getting good fresh fish is a little more challenging. I now have a quest to find the best fish market south of Hartsfield Airport!
But if you want to practice your fishing skills, we have two arcade games for you! If you want to challenge your skills with freshwater fishing, our Sega Bass Fishing Simulator is for you. Not a freshwater angler? Try out saltwater version with the Sega Marine Fishing Simulator. Either version has been rented for corporate parties and for Vendor expos. Another idea would be to hold your own fishing rodeo in your trade show booth to increase traffic to your booth. Both simulators are available for rental for your next event. Let us know if we can help you out! Or if you recommend a good fish market on the southside of Atlanta!
Very interested twist on our Giant Chess Board Rental Game. Here’s a great blog article on a permanent entertainment piece in New Zealand.