Trampoline parks, urban climbing, indoor Karting and redemption gaming are driving people back into shopping centres and giving retailers a new lease of life.
“Gravity Active Entertainment is now working with shopping centres to find new, exciting activities to draw customers in.”
Digital retail sales have skyrocketed in recent years, and it’s no secret that the high street has suffered as a result. In an age where online shopping offers more choice – and more convenience – how can traditional bricks-and-mortar shops compete?
A new business might have the answer. Gravity Active Entertainment is now working with shopping centres to find new, exciting activities to draw customers in – from trampolining to adventure golf.
Set up in 2015 by Michael Harrison, Harvey Jenkinson and Simon Whicker, it is now one of the fastest growing companies in the UK, with 500 employees and new sites popping up around the world.
“We could see that the retail industry needed something else, it needed to offer something the internet couldn’t,” says Mr Harrison, the company’s chief operating officer. “The question was: how could we drive footfall in the shopping centres and increase dwell time while offering a fun, safe environment for the family?”
Leaps and bounds
Gravity is now the go-to leisure operator of choice for businesses such as Land Securities, British Land, intu, Unibail-Radamco-Westfield and Pradera. The business is about to launch the first of 15 sites in Saudi Arabia, and new locations have already been signed throughout Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
This means Gravity is on track to hit its goal of 100 sites within the next three to five years – and will soon be expanding into different activities including bowling, adventure golf, sky coasting, soft play, urban climbing, VR and cinema.
Gravity is on track to hit its goal of 100 sites within the next three to five years.
“Leisure is a fast-moving industry and it’s important we are always at the forefront of the latest technologies and concepts,” says Mr Jenkinson, the company’s chief executive. “We will be launching activities that certainly can’t be found online.”
It’s clear that Gravity is breathing life back into the high street – and giving new life to communities as well. “We do a lot of work to decide what leisure offerings will work best within a centre,” says Mr Harrison.
“Being part of the community is very important to us. We offer disability sessions and school lesson plans linked to the national curriculum. We are really looking forward to the coming years and hope we can make a fundamental difference to high-street trade, the health of a generation – and the way families spend time together”.
For more information, visit gravity-uk.com