Wet Summer Drives Surge in Leisure, and Cinemas Feel the Impact of Barbenheimer, CACI Leisure Data Reveals

London ( October 9, 2023 ) -

CACI, the data specialists focused on people and place, has revealed the extent of positive impact on the cinema sector from the ‘Barbenheimer’ phenomenon. Both “Barbie” and “Oppenheimer” films achieved critical and box office success following their release on July 21st. CACI’s data, taken from their Brand Dimensions platform, has also analysed performance within the competitive socialising sector, which has continued to grow over the summer.

Looking at the impact of ‘Barbenheimer’, through analysing CACI’s Brand Dimensions data, all of the major cinemas performed well in both month-on-month and year-on-year figures. Comparing July with June, Curzon topped the leaderboard for both sales and transactions growth month-on-month, at 223% and 192% respectively. Picturehouse was not far behind (170% up in sales and 129% on transactions), particularly noteworthy given the Barbie and Oppenheimer films were only in cinemas for 11 days in July. Comparing sales year-on-year, Everyman saw a 71% increase against July 2022, whilst Curzon had an even more impressive 144% uplift. The three largest cinema brands – Cineworld, Vue, and The Odeon – all benefited from year-on-year sales growth of above 30%, with only the latter two sitting below the industry average of 44%.

Across all leisure (which includes gyms and fitness, music and video, and participation leisure), July 2023 sales grew by 23% month-on-month, as transactions were up 17%. Cinema was therefore not the only sector within leisure that saw a sales boost this summer, with the wet weather a key factor in driving success elsewhere too.

Looking at year-on-year growth within the Competitive Socialising operators tracked by Brand Dimensions, including the likes of Flight Club and Hollywood Bowl, the sector saw sales increase by 41% and transactions by 40%. ATV, however, remained relatively stable. Month-on-month growth tells an even more impressive story, with transactions growing by 86% and sales increasing by 98%, helped by a 6% rise in ATV.

Arabella Dalloz, Head of Leisure at CACI, commented: “It wouldn’t be a British summer without a bit of rain, but having one of the wettest Julys on record took most of us by surprise. Whilst this isn’t what people wanted for staycations, it certainly helped make the case for spending leisure time and money indoors, whether you were swept up by the Barbenheimer phenomenon or enjoy some crazy golf and darts. It goes to show that the cinema sector can still churn out great results if they have blockbusters to work with, while the growth of competitive socialising continues at pace, and is showing little sign of slowing down. Clearly people want to spend time and money on leisure, which is welcome news for the sector that should encourage operators to do what they can to continue the momentum.”

Rob Arthur, Founder of the leisure, entertainment and cinema consultancy, Entertainment Solution Services “ESS”, added: “To just put on a film is simply not enough anymore. The success of #Barbenheimer was the culmination of great film production; superb brand, social PR, and studio marketing efforts; in parallel with the positive impact of event driven, social, and high-specification, community-focussed cinemas. Next up for the UK big screen: Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, which will be a global phenomenon.”

This news follows CACI’s recent launch of a new version of Acorn, the demographic segmentation tool that helps businesses understand their customers and employ increasingly relevant and sophisticated consumer strategy. Acorn is fully integrated with Brand Dimensions, providing market-leading insight into the performance of 300 brands and their customers.

About CACI
CACI provides solutions to make the best possible location planning and customer targeting decisions.

We achieve this through expert knowledge of consumers and geographical areas supported by a wide range of purpose-built catchment models, consumer segmentation and demographic data. Our experts make us the pre-eminent location planning consultancy in the world. We provide large and small businesses across the globe with in-depth customer profiling and behaviour data to identify market opportunities and understand customers.

CACI offer a range of solutions and services through our market leading data, software and expertise to meet a client’s specific location planning and customer understanding needs.

About Entertainment Solution Services
Entertainment Solution Services Ltd. (ESS) is an international advisory group specialising in the cinema, film production and entertainment markets. The ESS team has extensive experience within the leisure sectors and offer multi-cultural solutions to location based and leisure real estate focussed out of home markets, government entities, sector entertainment business stakeholders, to enable them maximise income and generate new, untapped revenues.