India key priority market for Magnicity

/ New Delhi
Operator of panoramic observation decks in Europe and United States, Magnicity says its revenues in 2022 exceeded those in 2019, even though tourists from Asia were yet to return in strength. Jean Marc Champrobert, Chief Commercial Officer, says he is counting on India and other Asian nations to return in big numbers in 2023.
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Jean Marc Champrobert

How has the year 2022 been for you?

I would like to tell you how rich and exciting 2022 has been. Our new commercial brand launched recently, Magnicity, which brings together our Observatories with four attractions namely Paris Montparnasse, TV Tower in Berlin, the Euromast in Rotterdam and 360 Chicago in the USA has taken on a new dimension this year.

We want to give our visitors the opportunity to live a unique, memorable and differentiating experience and in various aspects of visiting our sites. For instance, to promote local economy and local products, we have a new bar in Chicago called Cloud Bar which offers a lot of locally-sourced products. Then there is a new Virtual Reality experience in Berlin, which we call Berlin’s Odyssey and which allows our visitors to discover the history of Berlin. Also, we have undertaken a comprehensive renovation of our thrill attraction Euroscoop in Rotterdam.

At the same time, our ambition is to become the world leader in Urban Altitude Tourism and in 2022 we have spent a lot of time sourcing new sites so that our portfolio can grow. New opportunities are opening up to us in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. We will be able to tell you more in a few months.

How has return of visitors to Magnicity properties been in 2022?

Despite a rather laborious start with a first quarter strongly impacted by the Covid-19 crisis and health restrictions, we will end the year at Magnicity Group with an income higher than 2019, which is far above our expectations.

These excellent results are driven in particular by our American site in Chicago, which has been breaking new records every month. After two years of health crisis which favoured destinations in the countryside or by the sea, urban destinations are once again becoming popular, which has helped us a lot.

As far as Paris is concerned, activity picked up strongly in mid-April thanks to domestic visitors, whose share in our overall visitor numbers has grown strongly over the past two years and also a lot thanks to our European visitors. However, only one long-haul destination has made great progress and that is the United States market. These trends are consistent with statistics of the Paris Tourism Board. The summer 2022 has been a good season for us and the pace has not weakened, at the end of the summer, instead, it has even accelerated since September.

Montparnasse Tower in Paris is a major tourism attraction

What is your forecast for 2023? Do you see any big change in source markets?

Despite a fairly uncertain environment with inflation, energy crisis in Europe and war in Ukraine, we have prepared a budget that is up on our 2022 target. Both Europe and North America should continue their good trends.

We are also counting heavily on a recovery in the South East Asian markets, India as well as, South Korea, Japan and, to a lesser extent, China.

This large geographical area, which before the Covid-19 crisis represented a large part of our activity, started up again quite late in our observatories (in the middle of summer or even at the end of summer). Positive signs from this zone lead us to believe that 2023 will most certainly be the year of the real recovery. We have already seen very good momentum over the last few weeks. To end with our predictions, there is the Groups Business segment which also recovered very timidly in 2022 and which should bring us better results in 2023.

How has Indian market fared since reopening of tourism?

Like many long-haul markets, Indian market experienced a very slow recovery on all of our sites. Several reasons to explain this. After two very complicated years, it is not so easy for both tourism operators in India and major destination players in Europe to resume commercial relations and collaboration. Important and numerous changes in the teams are also handicaps which slow down the recovery. The Covid-19 restrictions eased in the Spring, it was a little late compared to traditional peak travel season from India to Europe, which is in the April-June period. In addition, air capacities were not and probably still are not at the level of 2019, which does not facilitate flows.

What is your expectation for Indian market in 2023?

India and Southeast Asia, China have for many years now been of unquestionable importance for Europe in terms of visitor flows. China has been the centre of attention for European tourism professionals for many years. It is obvious today that we need to rebalance due to the situation in China and India will most certainly benefit from this rebalancing. From 2023, we will place India as a priority market in our business development strategy. Like many other tourist attractions, Covid-19 has forced us to freeze our sales investments in B2B and B2C . We will resume a normal rhythm in 2023.

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