Double Feature: Frank Entertainment Combines Cinemas With Bowling

After 106 years in business, Frank Entertainment is still a rising star. The family-owned chain now has 29 multiplexes along the East Coast, two that include bowling centers. Five more locations are slated to open by early 2013, all of them combining movie theaters with family entertainment or boutique bowling centers. And the company aims to have 500 screens and 50 bowling centers in the future.

It may seem like a hard time to grow such a mature industry. But company president Bruce Frank says he’s seen this movie before. “If you lived through the movie business for the past 100 years, everyone was writing it off.” Cinemas were supposed to be doomed by cable and satellite TV, DVDs and such. Instead, savvy operators thrived – especially ones who embraced new technologies. Frank Entertainment always had a knack for this, doing things like building the country’s first all stadium-seating cinema in 1986.

Today the company is helping transform the bowling industry in the same way with help from Brunswick. “They’re a key strategic partner for us,” says Bruce. “The challenge is to keep reinventing yourself.” He credits Brunswick for doing a nice job of this, helping Frank Entertainment be more successful. He sums up saying, “Hey, we’re having fun!” And that makes two of us.