Approaching the pusher world from two different perspectives, John Crompton, Cain’s Amusements, Herne Bay, and Darrell Simmonds, BANDAI NAMCO Amusements Europe (BNAE) sales manager – prize division shed light on how improved pusher bed prize offerings has helped elevate the classic fare to a whole new level of prominence.
Coinslot: How have you assessed the coin pushers market over the summer?
John Crompton: Pushers have probably been the best-performing product in the market over the 2017 summer season. The main reason is because the players like the low price of play, value for money and the fact they can win quality prizes. The introduction of cards onto the pusher playfield has been a major contributor to the great incomes, as this creates a loyalty with the customer as they try to win the whole set of cards for the Super Bonus. The initial success was with the Andamiro Spongebob Pineapple Arcade closed-loop pusher, and this has been continued with the DC Comics 4 Player.
Darrell Simmonds: Theming is the key to the success of pushers with licensed products like DC Comics/My Little Pony or PAC-MAN or must-have gadgets like fidget spinners etc.This year,spinners had a major impact on pushers.
CS: What are the innovations that you see driving the pusher market forward, be it extra features to products, increase in licenses etc?
JC: The players want to be entertained, so the easy game play and features are creating more players.The fact that the players are rewarded with a combination of tickets, prizes or cards means they are kept entertained and we are offering what we now term ‘Fun Retailing’.
DS: We are always expanding our licences and developing new products for pushers because we recognize how popular they are with players.
CS: How important do you feel the addition of collectable and plush items to a pusher unit is?
JC: The addition of collectible cards has been majorly important for the simple reason that the players want to collect the whole set. This is partly so they can win the Super Ticket Bonus, or just keep the cards as a souvenir.The plush items/merchandise on pushers has continued to thrive, and the high quality and licensed products have taken this to another level.
DS: “It has worked out very well for us – collectable items obviously keeps the customer coming back for more.Small plush also works very well with pushers.We have a good feedback with 3”PAC-MAN and on the strength of this we are introducing other licences such as DC Comics and Scooby Doo.
CS: Are there any particular standout products in the BNAE portfolio that you have seen perform well in this time, and if so why do you think that is?
JC: We have had immense success initially with Spongebob Pineapple Arcade, and this has continued with the fantastic licence DC Comics. The main reason for the success is due to great gameplay and very desirable licensed cards to be won.
DS: The standout products for prizes have been the DC Comics ranges, My Little Pony licensed products, the PAC-MAN stress ball key chains have also been great performers this season, as have the Harry Potter products. It all comes down to the quality of the gifts and the desirable licences.
CS: Are you able to shed any light on any new BNAE products or innovations within the sector going into 2018?
DS: We will have new ranges featuring the Scooby Doo licence which is huge for us. There will also be more DC Comics products as there are more films due to be released over the coming months.In addition, we will have new Pac Man and My Little Pony lines.