Karting is speed, adrenaline, entertainment, a hobby. On the other hand, it is a business based on the same hobby.
Today, there are karting clubs in each and every federal district and in almost all cities with a population of more than half a million people. But this does not mean at all that the launch of a simple open karting club is a trifling matter, and the construction of an indoor complex is simply the most successful way to throw money away. Everything in this business is much more complicated.
Three business models
Depending on the goals of the entrepreneur and the format of the business conceived, there are three options for organizing a business: an economy-class track, an “average” option with an open area, and an indoor go-kart center with developed infrastructure. Naturally, the volume of initial investments will directly depend on the chosen model.
A serious club with 10-15 high-quality cars, a special road surface, a telemetry system, and, most importantly, a full-fledged infrastructure - showers, warm locker rooms - will cost at least $ 500 thousand today. Projects of this kind are conceived for the future and are not at all suitable in order to quickly return the money invested. The payback period in this case is increased to 4-8 years.
The most common format of the Russian karting business is a regular asphalt pad measuring 30 by 40 meters and five cars. The cost of such a project is not more than 15 thousand dollars - taking into account the lease of land and the purchase of necessary equipment. The requirements for the tracks are the most minimal, the main thing is to ensure the level of safety for pilots and spectators.
The easiest and fastest option is to organize a track in a recreation park. Barriers can be made from old tires. You can start such a business with five used karts and two mechanics.
In order to protect the 300-meter-long track, you will need 3 thousand tires (the main thing here is not to be lazy to collect them), used cards will cost $ 800-900 per piece. By the way, such machines are quite simple to maintain, and the spare parts market for them has already formed. New cars of the amateur class will cost much more: not less than 4-5 thousand dollars apiece, but the cost of sports cards starts from seven thousand.
Representatives of the community of karting site owners are confident that it is quite possible to earn money in the regions by operating in such a minimalist format, at least 7-8 thousand dollars can be raised for the season, that is, after two years, you can pay back the investment.
There is also an intermediate option. This is an open area, but with developed infrastructure. The cost of building such a complex today is estimated at approximately 100-150 thousand dollars. Payback in this case stretches for five to six years, but in the future the monthly profitability of the club will be much higher.
Three sources of income
Karting clubs have at least three sources of income: the kart itself, kart rental, corporate events and training.
Rental cards are in great demand, and the yield directly depends on the flow of applicants and the cost of the rental minute. In Moscow, the standard rate today is 30–45 rubles, in the regions 10–20 rubles.
Pilot training school is an important source of income for kart clubs, which serve as serious sports and entertainment venues. The cost of a full course of study here can go up to several hundred dollars. By the way, training begins at the age of six. Thanks to training, such clubs do not close, but work all year round and generate income all year round.
Of course, the corporate segment brings the most tangible income to go-kart clubs. The cost of renting a track on a day off in one of the capital's clubs today amounts to 500 euros per hour for a corporate client. On weekdays, the rate can be reduced to 300 euros. Income will depend on the number of such customers. Advice from practitioners: if you want to collect entire flocks of "white-collar workers" - do not spare money and invest in the service. Your task is to provide customers with maximum comfort. Take an individual approach to the client. This is a must for the b2b niche.
Like any other leisure center, a go-kart club can offer guests a lot of additional and not at all free services. One such source is the restaurant. The logic is simple - karting is a sport, there is a winner in sport, which means he needs to celebrate the victory, it is better right away. By the way, the restaurant is not only an additional source of income, but also an additional reason to attract customers.
Land leasing and construction are some of the most tangible expense items for any go-kart club. These two stages are the most time-consuming. The next step is the purchase of the necessary equipment, the creation of a kart fleet, the search for manufacturers of disposable overalls, comforters and gloves. Then - staff recruitment, advertising campaign. When working with the corporate sector - creating a customer service. In principle, everything is not easy, each stage is quite laborious.
And, of course, the main problem of this business is seasonality. Both open and closed areas are affected by this factor - open areas are active from April to mid-October, and then “collapse”, while closed karting centers, on the contrary, stand idle all summer.
Hence the problems of club owners with staff. The main problem is staff turnover - it is difficult for small clubs to retain specialists during the recession, they cannot provide them with a decent salary.
Based on the article by Ekaterina Chinarova for the Business Magazine
* The article is more than 8 years old. May contain outdated data