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Sat 24th Sep 2016 - Mintel report reveals state of UK nightclub sector
Mintel – UK nightclub revenues see 21% decline in past five years, admissions down 23%, high entry fees and prices having negative impact: UK nightclub revenue has declined 21% in the past five years, down from £1.49bn in 2010 to £1.18bn in 2015, new research from Mintel has revealed. During that period, annual admissions fell by 23%, from 149 million in 2010 to 115 million in 2015. Mintel said it expected the market to experience further losses as revenue is set to decline a further 16%, falling below the £1bn mark to reach £982m in 2020. It also forecast yearly admissions figures would fall a further 14% by 2020, to 99 million. The research also revealed only 8% of Brits describe themselves as regular clubbers, while 15% consider themselves occasional clubbers and 12% describe themselves as infrequent clubbers. 10% of men claim to be regular clubbers, compared with 6% of women. Meanwhile, almost three in ten Brits choose to avoid the dance scene entirely, with as many as 27% of Brits claiming to have never visited a nightclub. Nightclubs face stiff competition from bars and pubs as two-fifths (40%) of nightclub-goers visited at least one bar or pub first before going to the last nightclub they visited, rising to 52% among those aged 45 or above. Meanwhile, one-third (33%) of visitors had alcoholic drinks at home before going to a nightclub, rising to 40% of 18 to 24-year-olds. Fewer than half (46%) of visitors purchased more than one alcoholic drink during their nightclub visit, with women (49%) slightly more likely than men (43%) to buy more than one alcoholic drink. And it’s not only drinks that are drawing clubbers away from nightclubs and into bars. More than two-fifths (43%) of Brits who have been to a nightclub prefer to go to bars with dancing areas rather than nightclubs, rising to 50% of 18 to 34-year-olds. The research found the top three issues that are most likely to have a negative impact on nightclub visitors are expensive door entry (46%), expensive drinks (46%), and crowding (43%). Meanwhile, music “not being to their taste” presents an issue for more than one-third (36%) of nightclub-goers. Price proved much more of a barrier to male nightclub-goers, as 50% of men said they were put off by expensive drinks, compared with 42% of women. Meanwhile, 48% of men complained about expensive door entry, compared with 44% of women. Women on the other hand are more likely to be concerned with aesthetics, as 38% of women are put off by the poor condition of the club, compared with only a quarter (25%) of men. Furthermore, when it comes to music it seems consumers are looking for the record to change as almost half (46%) find it difficult to discover a nightclub that plays the music they like, while 55% of Brits who have been to a nightclub prefer to go to gigs or festivals than nightclubs. Across the country, Londoners are twice as likely to say they are regular clubbers than average, as 16% of consumers living in the capital claimed to be regular clubbers. The next most likely to don their dancing shoes are consumers in the West Midlands (11%) and Yorkshire and Humberside (10%), who described themselves as regular clubbers. In comparison, less than one-in-ten consumers in the East Midlands (8%), the south west (8%), the north east (7%), the north west (6%), Wales (6%), Scotland (5%), and the south east (5%) confessed to being regular clubbers. Mintel research analyst Rebecca McGrath said: “Fabric’s recent closure, alongside other high-profile closures in recent months, highlights the increased regulatory pressure faced by nightclubs, as well as the competition they face from late-night bars and pubs. Total UK nightclub revenue is also in decline, as nightclubs are unable to compensate for declines in admissions through an increase in average spend per admission. High entry fees and drink prices are having a negative impact on people’s clubbing experiences, with many opting to purchase alcoholic drinks in other locations, including at home, before they get to a club. To combat this, nightclubs can concentrate on further integrating smartphones into the promotion and booking process, as well as in-club behaviour, as this holds particular appeal with key younger age groups. More event nights, live music and immersive experiences can also help reinvigorate excitement around visiting a nightclub as they will help an evening feel more unique. Music is a very important factor for club-goers, suggesting there is room for more third-party nightclub websites and apps to make searching for clubs via music type the central premise of the service, whether this means niche apps focused on clubs that play a certain genre of music or general apps that categorise different types of music.”

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