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[ 0 ] Sep. 4, 2012 | SBO Editor

While GameTruck delivers a consistently entertaining experience for its customers – with a typical two-hour party costing about $300 to $350 per hour – it offers the ultimate in flexibility for its franchise owners, who can choose to run the business themselves or manage it from a distance.

Video games on wheels is a fun, fast-growing franchise you can run from home.

GameTruck founder and CEO Scott Novis heads the preeminent brand in the mobile video game theater industry. Toss out any number of superlative adjectives about his franchised company – first, largest, fastest growing, most innovative, most comprehensive, patented – and they all fit like a glove.

GameTruck is the original and longest running mobile video game theater concept in the country, bringing ultimate video game parties almost anywhere via self-powered, climate-controlled GameTruck trailers outfitted with as many as eight flat-screen HDTVs, enhanced sound systems and dozens of the latest multiplayer games. GameTruck’s Mobile Video Game Theater is so unique it was granted a patent in 2011.

Since its founding in 2006, GameTruck has grown to 60 franchisees operating 80 GameTruck rigs in 150 territories across 23 states and Lagos, Nigeria. Expansion is under way in Canada and Trinidad and GameTruck expects to add 30 new franchisees and 60 new territories in 2012 alone, with long-range projections for 200 to 250 units covering the United States and Canada.

GameTruck hosts more parties every month than every competitor combined. In 4Q 2011, nearly 300,000 kids experienced a GameTruck. Yet Novis said he doesn’t try to convince prospective franchisees that GameTruck offers the best investment opportunity.

“I don’t convince them. In fact, convincing them is the exact opposite of my goal,” Novis said. “I subscribe to the philosophy that you can have everything you want in life, just as soon as you help enough other people get what they want first. Our goal here is to help other people get into a successful GameTruck business.”
Novis holds both electrical and computer engineering degrees from Arizona State; spent half a decade in Motorola research labs developing graphics and display technologies that earned him 10 patents; served as VP of development for Rainbow Studios, which was responsible for some of the most successful games of the PS2 era with 20 million units sold and revenue of $500 million and was recruited by The Walt Disney Company to be VP of development for upstart Fall Line Studios, which creates video games built around the Disney brand.

Novis was inspired to found GameTruck after attending his son’s fourth birthday party at a noisy, expensive pizza arcade. He knew there had to be a better solution: an arcade for home video games where people could play the best video games on the latest consoles with their friends in an affordable, fun environment.
He came up with the idea of the mobile video game theater, whose business model was made even more viable by the simultaneous convergence of several technologies including cost-effective flat-screen TVs, high-definition video game systems and inexpensive portable power. After some trial-and-error that featured some comedic moments, GameTruck was open for business.

“I’d built businesses for other people my whole career. It was time to do it for myself,” said the business owner.

GameTruck At-A-Glance

Market Position: GameTruck is the original and longest running mobile video game theater. In 2011, GameTruck was awarded a patent by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, identifying GameTruck’s unique process of entertaining people in its Mobile Video Game Theater.

History: Scott Novis first built a prototype in his garage – inviting friends and family over to play – before he and his brother, Chris, built the first GameTruck mobile theater and threw the first GameTruck birthday party for a friend and neighbor. In the interim, Novis was named vice president and general manager of The Walt Disney Company’s Fall Line Studios, specifically created to design video games built around the Disney brand. After successfully leading Fall Line, Novis left to grow GameTruck, which he had designed to be scalable and operable by virtually anyone with a passion for video games and working with children. GameTruck began franchising in 2008.

Franchise Facts: The estimated initial investment for a single GameTruck franchise ranges between $135,000 and $185,00, including a $9,500 franchise fee. Royalties are seven percent of gross revenue paid monthly. Franchisees also contribute up to one percent of gross revenue to a systemwide marketing fund. Variables to franchise cost are territory size and equipment cost.

GameTruck has three vehicle models: a gooseneck tow-behind trailer that GameTruck has used since its inception, a V-Nose trailer that has become very popular and a recently added RV (all-in-one truck and trailer) unit. The state-of-the-art trailers range in price from $75,000 to $98,000, while the all-in-one RV units cost from $110,000 to $125,000, depending on options. Franchisees must provide their own tow vehicles. Franchisees typically start with one trailer and grow to two or three trailers.

GameTruck can be operated as a home-based business, with franchisees storing their rigs in either RV storage lots or on their own property. Prior experience operating a retail business is not required.

Training and Ongoing Support: GameTruck offers a comprehensive two-week training and education program that combines both WebEx instruction and live-event training from the company’s training team at the franchisee’s location. Experts, franchisees, techs, gamers, drivers, marketing experts and the founders participate in this comprehensive training program.

For info, visit www.gametruckparty.com. The company headquarters is located at: 1501 W. Fountainhead Pkwy, Suite 520, Tempe, AZ 85282  Phone: 480-303-7212

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Category: Magazine, Start Your Own Business, Start Your Own Business Winter 2013