ABS-CBN launches indoor theme park

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ABS-CBN Corp. is expanding its portfolio with the introduction of a new indoor theme park that banks on its line of business as a media company.

The company on Sunday launched ABS-CBN Studio Experience (ABS-CBN Studio XP), a 1,400-square meter amusement park inside Ayala Malls TriNoma.

The new venture joins KidZania Manila in ABS-CBN’s theme parks under its consumer products and experiences business segment.

Cookie S. Bartolome, head of ABS-CBN’s themed experience, told reporters in a media launch on Friday that while ABS-CBN Studio XP costs “significantly lower” than KidZania, it is eyed to one day be a key driver in boosting revenues.

“We’re able to serve the market that KidZania is not able to serve here, so it’s complementary to that business,” she said.

She said for senior and junior high school students, especially those pursuing the Humanities and Social Sciences (HUMSS) track, the park is a good immersion should they decide to pursue media arts because it is a hyper real experience.

The ABS-CBN Studio XP features a total of 15 attractions grouped into three studios: fantasy, reality and retail. The fantasy studio is an augmented reality set-up that mimics experiences and stunts of action stars; the reality studio replicates shows such as “The Voice,” “Minute to Win It” and “Pinoy Big Brother” and allows visitors to take part in the show; and the retail studio showcases various ABS-CBN souvenirs and merchandise.

The themed store also has an 80-seater, four-dimensional (4D) theater for screening of short films and shows, or hosting live events. It could be used as an “interactive multiplayer hub” for game simulation with themes from shows “Ang Probinsyano” and “La Luna Sangre.”

Ms. Bartolome said if the ABS-CBN Studio XP in TriNoma becomes successful, it might be expanded or replicated via similar experience stores in other locations.

“We just wanna see first how the business goes in terms of the mix between retail and attractions,” she said.

“So we’re trying to understand what can drive the [revenue] — can attraction drive it or will the attraction drive the retail revenues?” she said.

A ticket to ABS-CBN Studio XP costs P375 for guests visiting for the first time and P350 for succeeding visits.

In the first half, ABS-CBN reported a 41% plunge in net income to P849.88 million due to higher production costs in the second quarter. KidZania Manila, which follows a similar product pattern as ABS-CBN Studio XP, contributed P231 million in revenues during the semester. — Denise A. Valdez