KidZania ropes in Big Bazaar, Central for theme city

Written by Ashish Sinha | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 24 2013, 07:06am hrs
The R100-crore Mumbai edition of the Mexican kids edutainment brand KidZania, co-owned by actor Shah Rukh Khan, has managed to rope in Big Bazaar and Central of the Kishore Biyani-led Future Group as partners for its theme city for children.

KidZania had earlier roped in Yes Bank as the official sponsor of the bank establishment at the brands Mumbai facility, which is expected to be ready by March.

It is also in talks with McDonalds, Kelloggs, Nestle, Sony, DHL among other brands, who are also international partners in some centres, Viraj Singh, chief marketing officer for KidZania India, told FE.

KidZania India has already announced that it would be spending close to $15-20 million on each of the theme parks as they spread out to Delhi and Bangalore over next three years. KidZania is a privately held Mexican company currently operating in 11 locations, allowing children to take up adult jobs and earn money. KidZania has received more than 20 million guests around the world since its opening in 1999 in Mexico City.

Globally, KidZania has over 550 brand partnerships across its centres.

Khan is reported to own 26% in ImagiNation Edutainment India, the firm that holds the franchise for the India operations.

The balance 74% is owned by Singapore-based KidZ Inc. Every KidZania park is a replica of a real city. Globally, children, aged 4-14, work in the theme city in branded activities such as bottling Coca-Cola, selling burgers at McDonalds or playing salesman in a Big Bazaar departmental store. Spread across 75,000 square feet, the park opens in next two months in R City Mall, Mumbai followed by Delhi. The KidZania's Mumbai theme park will offer children more than 75 role-playing options. Talking about the ticketing, Singh said: "The tickets per child should be in the range of R750-850, while the tickets for accompanying parent will be subsidised. We expect a footfall of 7-8 lakh in the first year.