Thinking of Starting an Axe Throwing Business? Here’s What You Need to Know!

axe throwing business

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Starting an Axe Throwing Business

Are you considering diving into the exciting world of axe throwing? This fast-growing industry has captivated thrill-seekers worldwide and is one of the hottest entertainment trends today. If you’re curious about what it takes to launch your own axe throwing business, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s explore the essentials, from the industry’s roots to practical tips for getting started.

The Rise of Axe Throwing

Axe throwing as an organized sport began in a Toronto backyard in 2006, thanks to Matt Wilson, who founded the Backyard Axe Throwing League. This exciting pastime quickly spread to the U.S. and beyond.. According to squareup.com, the throwing axes industry has seen impressive growth, with a 317% increase in sales from 2018 to 2019. By 2023, the industry’s revenue reached approximately $215 million annually, with over 360 axe throwing businesses operating in the U.S​. For more information on the beginnings of axe throwing as a global leisure activity, check out this article from theringer.com

Axe throwing has rapidly gained popularity as a unique and exhilarating activity. But what makes it so appealing? From its stress-relieving benefits to its social nature, throwing axes offers a perfect blend of fun and excitement. Axe throwing even stands out as a new fun thing to do for date nights and more. The following are some primary reasons for the growing popularity of axe throwing:

Stress Relief:

Axe throwing is a fantastic way to blow off steam. The physical act of hurling an axe at a target can be incredibly cathartic.

Social Activity: 

It’s a popular choice for group events like bachelorette parties and corporate retreats.

Accessible and Fun: 

With expert instructors guiding newcomers, axe throwing is easy to pick up and enjoy​ 

Benefits of Starting an Axe Throwing Business

Starting an axe throwing business offers several compelling benefits that make it an attractive venture for entrepreneurs. Here are some key advantages:

Growing Popularity

Axe throwing has seen a surge in popularity in recent years, making it one of the fastest-growing entertainment activities. Its unique and exciting nature attracts a wide range of participants, from casual thrill-seekers to competitive athletes. This growing interest ensures a steady flow of customers and a robust market demand​.

Unique and Engaging Experience

Axe throwing provides a distinctive experience that sets it apart from other recreational activities. It offers a perfect blend of physical activity, competition, and social interaction. Also as a tourist venue, prnewswire.com shows that 95% of travelers prefer to spend at least part of their trip on new and unique experiences.

High Profit Margins

The initial investment in equipment and setup of an axe throwing busines can be recouped relatively quickly due to the high profit margins associated with axe throwing sessions. With low ongoing costs for maintenance and staffing, an axe throwing business can achieve significant profitability. Many venues also increase revenue by offering additional services such as food and beverages, merchandise, and league memberships​ (Xola)​.

Flexible Business Model

Axe throwing businesses can operate under various models, including mobile setups for events, dedicated venues, or as an added attraction within existing entertainment centers. This flexibility allows entrepreneurs to tailor their business to local market conditions and customer preferences, maximizing their chances of success​ (Step By Step Business)​.

Community Building and Repeat Customers

Axe throwing fosters a sense of community among participants. Many axe throwing businesses establish leagues and regular competitions, encouraging repeat visits and building a loyal customer base. This community aspect not only boosts revenue through repeat business but also generates word-of-mouth marketing, which is invaluable for business growth.

Key Considerations for Starting an Axe Throwing Business

Starting an axe throwing business involves several key considerations to ensure success and sustainability. The following concepts are important to the development of your new axe throwing business:

Research and Planning:

  • Market Analysis: Identify your competitors and understand the local demand for axe throwing.
  • Business Plan: Outline your business goals, target market, pricing strategy, and marketing plan.
  • Choose a Business Structure: Decide between an LLC, S Corp, or C Corp based on your axe throwing business needs.
  • Secure Funding: Determine your startup costs, including facility rental, equipment, and staff wages.

Location and Setup:

  • Find the Right Venue: Look for a large space that can accommodate multiple lanes and has good accessibility.
  • Safety Measures: Ensure your facility has proper safety barriers and trained staff to guide participants.

Total Estimated Costs of an Axe Throwing Business

Starting an axe throwing business involves a substantial initial investment. Here’s a rough estimate of the total startup costs:

  • Initial Setup: $70,000 – $200,000
  • Monthly Operational Costs: $8,000 – $20,000

These estimates can vary based on your location, the size of your venue, and the quality of the equipment and services you choose. Always conduct thorough research and consult with industry experts to create a detailed and accurate budget tailored to your specific business plan.

By understanding and planning for these costs, you can set a solid foundation for a successful axe throwing business.

Building a Customer Base

Engaging your audience is crucial for building a loyal customer base and spreading the word about your axe throwing business. To make your axe throwing venue stand out, consider these tips:

Create Unique Events: 

Host themed nights, leagues, or corporate events to attract different segments of your target audience.

Leverage Social Media: 

Promote your business on platforms like Instagram and TikTok, where your primary audience is active.

Encourage Feedback:

 Ask for reviews and suggestions from your customers to continuously improve your offerings.

Ensuring Safety in Your Axe Throwing Business

Axe throwing is thrilling and fun, but safety must always be a top priority to ensure a great experience for all participants. Here are essential safety guidelines for running a successful and secure axe throwing business:

Proper Training and Supervision:

  • Qualified Staff: Ensure all staff are well-trained in axe throwing techniques and safety protocols. Staff should also be certified in first aid.
  • Supervision Ratios: Maintain a ratio of at least one supervisor for every four targets, as recommended by insurance companies​

Facility Setup:

  • Safety Barriers: Install sturdy barriers between lanes to prevent axes from accidentally crossing into adjacent lanes.
  • Safe Distances: Ensure there is ample space between throwing lanes and behind the throwers to accommodate spectators and participants safely.

Clear Instructions and Guidelines:

  • Safety Briefings: Provide comprehensive safety briefings to all participants before they start throwing. Cover the basics of proper stance, grip, and throwing techniques.
  • Dress Code: Inform participants about the required dress code, such as wearing closed-toe shoes to protect their feet from dropped axes.

Regular Equipment Maintenance:

  • Inspect Axes: Regularly check axes for any damage or wear and replace them as necessary to avoid accidents caused by faulty equipment.
  • Maintain Targets: Ensure that the targets are in good condition and securely fixed in place to prevent them from moving or falling during throws​

Starting and running an axe throwing business involves more than just setting up targets and booking reservations. It’s also essential to navigate various legal requirements and protect your business from potential legal issues. Here’s a guide to help you understand the legal considerations for your axe throwing business:

Permits and Licenses

  • Business License: You’ll need to obtain a business license to operate legally in your chosen location. Check with local authorities to understand the specific requirements.
  • Zoning Permits: Ensure your venue is zoned for recreational activities. Some areas have strict zoning laws, so it’s essential to verify that your location complies.
  • Health and Safety Permits: Given the nature of axe throwing, you’ll need to adhere to health and safety regulations. This might include regular inspections and compliance with fire safety standards.

Implement Safety Waivers

What It Is: A safety waiver is a legal document that participants sign before they start throwing axes. It outlines the risks of the activity and what they agree to by participating.

Why It Matters: While a waiver doesn’t make you immune to lawsuits, it serves as a crucial defense tool. It shows that participants were informed of the risks and agreed to them​

Best Practices:

  • Ensure the waiver is clear and easy to understand.
  • Consult with a lawyer to draft or review the waiver to make sure it meets legal standards in your state​

Compliance with Local Laws

  • Age Restrictions: Implement age restrictions for participants, ensuring they meet the minimum age required by law to participate in axe throwing.
  • Alcohol Policies: If you plan to serve alcohol at your venue, obtain the necessary licenses and adhere to local regulations regarding alcohol service. Ensure staff are trained in responsible alcohol service.

Secure Comprehensive Insurance Coverage

What It Is: Insurance that covers various aspects of your business, including general liability and worker’s compensation.

Why It Matters: Insurance protects your business from financial losses due to accidents, injuries, or lawsuits

Best Practices:

  • Work with an experienced insurance broker to find coverage that fits your specific needs.
  • Review and update your policy regularly

Intellectual Property

  • Trademarks: Protect your brand by registering your business name, logo, and any unique concepts as trademarks. This prevents competitors from using similar branding and helps establish your business identity.
  • Copyrights: Ensure that any original content, such as promotional materials or instructional videos, is protected under copyright law.

Selecting the right legal entity for your axe throwing business is a critical decision that impacts your liability, taxes, and overall operations. The three most common structures are LLCs, C Corps, and S Corps. Here’s a breakdown of each to help you decide which might be best for your venture.

Limited Liability Company (LLC)

An LLC combines the benefits of a corporation with those of a partnership or sole proprietorship, offering flexibility and protection. Here are some of the advantages of an LLC:

Liability Protection: Separates personal assets from business liabilities, protecting you from being personally liable for business debts.

Tax Flexibility: Can choose to be taxed as a sole proprietorship, partnership, or S Corp, allowing for optimal tax benefits based on your situation.

Fewer Formalities: Less stringent reporting requirements and fewer corporate formalities compared to a corporation.

One disadvantage of an LLC is that members must pay self-employment taxes on their share of the profits, which can sometimes be higher than corporate tax rates. Additionally, while LLCs offer flexibility in management, they can also face challenges in raising capital compared to corporations, as they cannot issue stock.

C Corporation (C Corp)

A C Corp is a separate legal entity that offers significant benefits, particularly for larger businesses or those seeking to raise capital. Here are some of the advantages of a C Corp:

Limited Liability: Owners are not personally liable for business debts, providing strong protection for personal assets.

Investment Opportunities: Can raise capital through the sale of stocks, making it easier to attract investors.

Perpetual Existence: Continues to exist beyond the involvement of the original owners.

One weakness of a C Corp is that it faces double taxation, where earnings are taxed at both the corporate level and again as shareholder dividends. Additionally, C Corps have more complex compliance requirements and higher administrative costs due to extensive record-keeping, operational processes, and reporting obligations.

S Corporation (S Corp)

An S Corp is not a different business entity but a tax designation that can be elected by an LLC or a C Corp. Here are some of the advantages of an S Corp:

  • Pass-Through Taxation: Avoids double taxation by allowing profits (and some losses) to be passed directly to the owners’ personal income without being subject to corporate tax rates.
  • Self-Employment Tax Savings: Owners can take a salary and receive additional profits as dividends, which are not subject to self-employment taxes.

One negative aspect of an S Corp is that it has strict eligibility requirements, including a limit of 100 shareholders and the necessity for all shareholders to be U.S. citizens or residents. Additionally, S Corps are limited to one class of stock, which can restrict flexibility in attracting and managing investments.

Making the Decision

Choosing the right legal entity involves considering your business goals, financial situation, and risk tolerance. An LLC offers flexibility and ease of management, making it suitable for many small to medium-sized businesses. A C Corp is ideal for those looking to grow large and attract significant investment. An S Corp can provide tax benefits but comes with stricter requirements.

Consult with a Professional:

 It’s crucial to consult with a reputable accountant and lawyer to receive personalized advice tailored to your specific business needs. They can help you navigate the complexities of each option and make an informed decision.

Get Started on Your Axe Throwing Business Today

Starting an axe throwing business presents numerous benefits, from tapping into a growing market to enjoying high profit margins and fostering a loyal customer community. By leveraging these advantages, entrepreneurs can build a successful and sustainable business in this exciting and dynamic industry. The flexibility of different business models, such as mobile setups or dedicated venues, further enhances the potential for success. Today axe throwing stands out as one of the top fun things for guys to do, as well as ladies, as a recreational activity. With the right approach, your axe throwing business can become a popular destination for entertainment and social gatherings, ensuring long-term profitability and growth.

Frequently Asked Questions

Starting an axe throwing business offers numerous benefits, such as tapping into a growing market, enjoying high profit margins, and fostering a loyal customer community. This unique and engaging activity attracts a diverse clientele, making it a popular choice for social gatherings and corporate events.

Axe throwing has rapidly gained popularity as one of the fastest-growing entertainment activities. Its unique blend of physical activity, competition, and social interaction has made it a favorite for group events, ensuring a steady flow of customers.

The initial costs of starting an axe throwing business can vary but generally include leasing a facility, setting up axe throwing lanes, purchasing equipment, and covering insurance. Total startup costs can range from $70,000 to $200,000, depending on the location and scale of the business.

Key legal considerations include obtaining the necessary business licenses and permits, securing liability and property insurance, implementing safety protocols, and having participants sign liability waivers. Consulting with legal professionals is essential to ensure compliance with local regulations and protect your business from potential lawsuits.

The average monthly operational cost for an axe throwing business ranges from $9,000 to $23,500. This includes rent, utilities, employee salaries, insurance, maintenance, and marketing expenses.

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ariel webb author

Ariel Webb is a distinguished travel writer and marketer with dual bachelor’s degrees in English Literature and Creative Writing, and a master’s in Medical Anthropology. 

Known for her captivating narratives, she skillfully bridges travel experiences and audience engagement. Beyond her professional work, Ariel enjoys creating artwork, reading, and cherishing her roles as a mother and wife.

Axe Throwing Business

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