Planet Hollywood plots aggressive expansion

Planet Hollywood, the themed restaurant chain, is aggressively building its brand by launching a chain of sports restaurants, megaplex cinemas, and ice-cream products in Europe at the start of next year.

The company has formed a partnership deal with US-based cinema operation AMC Entertainment to put Planet Hollywood restaurants inside huge cinema complexes – any cinema complex with more than 16 screens is termed a megaplex.

It will also develop a premium line of ice cream, called Cool Planet Ice Cream. It will be developed in partnership with Dreyer Grand Ice Cream. In the US, it has already launched three sports-themed stores.

The company has appointed Guy Laurence as executive vice-president to oversee the expansion in Europe.

Laurence joins in January but until then will continue in his job as MGM vice-president of international distribution and marketing.

Laurence says: “We’re looking at a number of sites to bring these projects to Europe. The ones we bring over first will depend on which sites become available.” Laurence was unable to comment in detail about the sports restaurant concept, which will be tested in the US first.

Planet Hollywood plans to open eight more sites across Europe before Christmas, bringing the European total to 26.

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