2013 Top 100 Survey Says…March 26, 2013 By: Donna Hood Crecca
Growth was the name of the game once again for the nightlife operators participating in the annual Nightclub & Bar Top 100 survey. More than two-thirds (68.2%) report increased revenue in 2012, and nearly a third (31.4%) cited growth in excess of 10% over 2011 revenues. More than 1,400 venue operators participated in the 2013 Nightclub & Bar Top 100 survey, conducted online from Oct. 9 to Dec. 7, 2012. The survey is a research tool employed in developing the annual Top 100 list.
The total bar and nightclub segment grew 3.9% overall in 2012, and this survey reveals many venues achieved strong results during a year characterized by the slow recovery from the economy recession. That trend demonstrates that bars and nightclubs are not only relevant in today’s market, but many are also succeeding and growing thanks to strong operations, engaging entertainment offerings and attractive promotional programs.
Nightclubs comprised nearly two-fifth (38.7%) of venues participating in the Top 100 survey, and three-quarters (76.9%) were dance clubs. One-fifth (20.5%) were restaurant bars, with the majority of those being casual dining restaurants. Bars accounted for nearly one-fifth of respondents (17.6%), and nearly half (47.5%) were traditional bar/tavern locations.
Drinks, especially those involving spirits, were an extremely important part of the business for these operators. On average, adult beverages accounted for 56% of total revenues at participating venues, with spirits averaging 40% of drink sales. Just over half of participants (51.8%) reported bottle service available at their locations, while 58% offered VIP areas and nearly three-quarters (73.2%) featured dance floors. Food was available at 62.8% of participating operations
Entertainment was a key component of bar and nightclub concepts in 2012. More than three-quarters (77.1%) featured DJs, and 70.2% showcased live entertainment. Slightly less than half of venues participating offered gaming, and pool tables, video games and jukebox/internet music systems ranked as the top three gaming options.