An award-winning Northland adventure park business which introduced Kiwi thrill seekers to off-road “monster scooters” is on the market.
With other attractions including mountain biking, forest paintballing, survival programmes and a café, HeadsUp Adventures has quickly grown into one of Whangarei’s best-known visitor attractions since the business was set up three years ago.
The popular adventure park is the only business in New Zealand, and the first in Australasia, to offer monster scooters. Built in Switzerland, these heavy-duty off-road scooters have become a hit among all types of riders and are the perfect family activity.
Their popularity has helped drive the rapid rise of HeadsUp Adventures, which has achieved the top visitor rating of five on TripAdvisor. The Whangarei adventure park has won Northland Regional Council’s Environmental Business Excellence Award for the past two years.
Located just 11 kilometres from Whangarei’s central business district, the land, buildings and business sustaining HeadsUp Adventures are now being marketed for sale as a freehold going concern. Sale is by way of a tender closing on 1 April, through Bayleys Whangarei.
Located on a large tract of land featuring numerous adventure trails, native bush, two privately situated homes and majestic views over Whangarei Harbour, the listing has been tipped as the “lifestyle business opportunity of the year”.
Salespeople Sam Swinburne and Neil Campbell said assets for sale included more than 55 hectares of freehold land at 211 Whangarei Heads Road, plus the dwellings and outdoor adventure park business.
Also included are plant and equipment such as monster scooters, mountain bikes and vehicles including two shuttle buses and a minivan used to transport visitors to and from the trails.
Mr Swinburne said the land for sale encompassed mature native forest and open space with extensive roading and car parks.
“The smaller dwelling sits at an elevated spot with stunning harbour views. It is a modern one-bedroom home with an ensuite, office and open-plan living, plus four auxiliary outbuildings,” Mr Swinburne said.
“The second dwelling is a larger family home, with three bedrooms and two bathrooms. It occupies a private and sheltered location with a picturesque view across a river valley and bush-clad hills.
“Both homes are tidy, functional and very comfortable, providing multiple living options for a new owner – with possibilities to provide staff accommodation, generate rental income or house extended family,” said Mr Swinburne.
The property is in three titles on rural-zoned land under the Whangarei District Plan. The adventure park operates entirely on the largest site, along with the two homes, with all business activities consented. One site is largely untouched native bush.
Mr Swinburne said the business had grown rapidly, backed by intensive digital and event marketing. “Even amid the Covid-19 pandemic, it is on track to deliver significant year-on-year growth with estimated sales revenue of about $380,000 this financial year. The main reason for this is that domestic visitor support has always been one of the key drivers in the business, with well-priced and versatile products on offer,” he said.
Detailed information on business performance and assets is available to potential buyers subject to signing a confidentiality agreement.
“HeadsUp Adventures opened for business in December 2017. It began with downhill trails for mountain bikes and exclusive off-road scooters, and today has 13 dedicated mountain bike and eight monster scooter tracks for all levels of riders,” said Mr Swinburne.
“The business has been expanded with the addition of forest paintballing and back2bush survival and adventure skills courses for schools and corporate groups.”
Mr Campbell said the business benefited from its multiple income streams. The monster scooters represented a unique point of difference, while the café added income and helped to keep visitors on-site for longer, he said.
“Business expansion has been supported with comprehensive use of social media and event marketing. This has created very high awareness with over 6,000 organic Facebook followers and a top-category visitor rating of five on TripAdvisor,” Mr Campbell said.
“While the business has shown impressive expansion, there are still significant opportunities for a new owner to grow it further,” he said.
“A substantial undeveloped landholding offers plenty of room to expand into other revenue streams. Possibilities identified by the existing owners include flying fox or zip-line rides, on-site accommodation such as cabins or summer ‘glamping’ facilities, and hosting weddings or business/corporate functions,” said Mr Campbell.
“The existing owner operates the business full-time, whilst employing 12 staff, whose expertise and ongoing support are available to buyers,” he said.
Mr Campbell said a buyer would benefit from all of the hard work already having been done by the existing owner – including considerable investment into infrastructure such as roads, power supply, buildings and adventure park tracks.
“The business is ready for a new owner to collect profit immediately from this established business – with substantial capacity to develop and add value,” said Mr Campbell.
“Combined with the lifestyle opportunities from living on-site, this is likely to attract significant buyer interest. For an adventurous family seeking a work/life change and new opportunities in 2021, this could truly be the lifestyle business opportunity of the year.”
Mr Campbell said that despite its outdoors setting and tracts of native forest, the adventure park was positioned right on the fringe of Whangarei.
“Just 10 minutes’ drive from the CBD and less than five minutes from the airport, the site is easily reached by both locals and tourists. Key amenities are available in the nearby suburb of Onerahi, including a retail shopping centre, a hotel complex and two primary schools. The Whangarei Heads area offers two more schools, campgrounds, holiday homes, beaches and a popular golf course,” Mr Campbell said.