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Attractions sector sales steady but operators challenged by rising costs

Attractions sector sales steady but operators challenged by rising costs
September 1, 2014

As survey of the operators of Australia's amusements, carnival rides, theme parks and waterparks shows that the sector remains upbeat despite increased cost pressures.

Newly released results from the first ever 'State of the Industry' survey undertaken by the Australian Amusement, Leisure and Recreation Association (AALARA) show that there is a high degree of long term confidence within attractions businesses.

Designed to get a full picture of the current performance of businesses in the amusement, recreation and leisure industry as well as measuring their confidence moving into the Australian summer, results from the Survey highlight that:

• Sales volumes have remained steady over the last quarter in all industry sectors with the vast majority of respondents reporting flat or only minor increases or decreases;
• Wages, input costs and overheads have increased across the board in the last quarter;
• Sales prices have remained flat across all industries despite product input costs, overheads and wage costs all increasing across all industries;
• Businesses expect sales rates to increase in the next quarter – but only marginally;
• Wages, input costs and overheads are expected to remain steady or to increase marginally over the next quarter although most respondents intend to keep prices steady;
• 90% of respondents expect to maintain or slightly increase staffing levels in the next three months;
• There is a good level of confidence in the industry with more than half (55 to 60% of businesses confident enough to invest in their business in the next quarter; and
• Direct wage costs, business overheads and compliance are seen as the three main barriers to business growth.

The survey, which also includes children’s play centres, go-kart operations, heritage attractions, laser tag and trampoline arenas, also aims to measure what business owners and managers see as the key roadblocks to their success so AALARA can develop their policy and advocacy work to target the issues prohibiting the development of theindustry.

Commenting on the Survey’s findings, AALARA President Phil Durkin stated “the inaugural AALARA State of the Industry Survey points to a number of barriers pressuring businesses in our industry and other factors holding them back from growth.

“Overall, the results show an industry that is confident of continued success despite upward pressure from overheads, wage and capital expenditure. Ongoing challenges faced by businesses were highlighted in the results with compliance, business taxes at every level of government and increased wage costs leading the list of issues restricting business growth.”

AALARA General Manager Troy Cush added “short term expectations for business performance are modest, with neutral or marginal improvement across all key business indicators for the next three months.

“Longer term there is a high degree of confidence within business that points to stable growth prospects as businesses have indicated they are certainly willing to invest in their operations the next quarter approaches.”

For more information on AALARA contact Troy Cush on 07 3807 3508, E:,


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