• Chuck E. Cheese to roll out downscaled upgrade in mid '02

IRVING, Tex. -- CEC Entertainment, parent of Chuck E. Cheese's, reported in a May 14 SEC filing that it will institute a Phase IV store upgrade program in some 20 to 30 sites in the second half of 2002.

Cost of the Phase IV changes -- which include game enhancements and a game share/rotation program between stores -- is $60,000, compared to the $200,000 cost for a Phase III upgrade.

This year the company expects 120 stores to receive the more extensive Phase III update, which typically includes a new toddler play area, games, rides, sky-tubes, kid check and prize-area enhancements.

The report put the cost of opening a new Chuck E. Cheese's store at $2 million. In addition to the 28 new stores it opened last year, the company has opened five so far this year.

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