NEW DELHI :
Multiplex chain PVR Cinemas has announced the launch of its first cinema in Odisha, with a six-screen property at Rourkela. With this opening, PVR Cinemas marks its expansion to 51 screens in east India across 12 properties in five states.
The new property has a total seating capacity of 987 people.
To be sure, with the film exhibition business seeing signs of recovery, many multiplex chains such as PVR, INOX, Carnival, and Miraj are firming up expansion plans that have been in the works. These will be across small towns and metros such as Hyderabad, Jalandhar, Rourkela, Bhilwara, and Kolkata, with an additional focus on deepening penetration into south India, which remains dominated by single-screen cinemas.
A regular multiplex property can cost between ₹3 crore and ₹3.5 crore to build, while premium cinemas can cost more. However, companies are clear this should be a time for caution since losses of the past year-and-a-half cannot be wiped off immediately.
The pandemic may have altered timelines but has also opened newer ways of doing business where multiplex chains are working with real estate partners on a transparent revenue-sharing model, which is a win-win for all concerned.
The recent announcement of PVR Cinemas merging with rival INOX Leisure Ltd has caused producers and film-makers to worry about the combined might and negotiating power of the two large multiplex chains which are likely to corner close to 50% of India’s total multiplex screen share.
Producers said the merged entity could dictate terms on show timings, revenue share and even the window between theatre and OTT release of films. Besides consumers may have to shell out more for tickets and food if the two decide to create luxury cinemas essentially turning theatres into premium out-of-home experiences.