Cinepolis speeds up India rollout

Written by Geeta Nair | Pune | Updated: Oct 11 2013, 17:09pm hrs
Cinepolis India, the only FDI in the countrys cinema exhibition space, is speeding up its India rollout plan. The target is to open 400 screens by 2016. It currently operates 65 screens across the country.

Cinepolis India country head Ashish Shukla said Cinepolis is committed to investing and growing in India. Cinepolis is all set to open the largest multiplex in India at the Magarapatta Seasons Mall in Pune in the next four to five weeks, Shukla said. This large format called Megaplex will have 15 screens and will also house luxury cinema brand called VIP.

Cinepolis is ahead of its operating plan and has got fresh commitments from developers and the directorial dispute at Cinepolis India has had no impact on the day-to-day business and the matter is sub-judice, he said.

What other companies have done in 12 to 15 years we will be doing in lesser time. We have done 54 screens in 39 months. By the end of March 2014 we will add another 90 screens. The impetus on rollout is much stronger and faster. We have a clear mandate that we need to expand. Nobody in India has done 100 screens in less than 10 years. We will do it in five years and that too in all the four zones, Shukla said.

When Cinepolis entered India, they were the 15th operator and now they are the fifth-largest, pointed out Shukla. On an average, the company invests R2-2.5 crore per screen in India.

Cinepolis India is a subsidiary of Cinpolis, which is headquartered in Morelia, Mexico, and is the worlds fourth-largest movie theater circuit, operating more than 2,500 screens in 11 countries. The Mexican theatre chain started operations in India in 2009 and has 65 screens operational as on date.

The large format screen popular in Mexico as well as the luxury brand, VIP, is being brought to India for the first time.

The Pune Cinepolis Megaplex with its 15 screens will see a movie starting every 10 minutes and run 90 shows a day. With India getting four releases a week, Shukla believes that this will work in India. There are five such megaplexes coming up in India. After Pune will be Mumbai and then NCR, Kochi and Mohali. On an average multiplexes have 4-6 screens in India while Cinepolis has 12 screens on an average per location globally. It has 18-screen to 22-screen multiplexes in Mexico and these are running profitably.

Cinepolis has 300 VIP luxury screens across the world. Apart from recliners, better leg room, there will be a restaurant that will serve food at the seat in ceramic ware and a bar to go with it. Around R40 crore is being invested in the Megaplex in Pune.

Magarpatta City MD Satish Magar, who has partnered with Cinpolis in their Seasons Mall, said they were looking forward to the opening of Cinpolis in the mall. The construction and the interior set-up of Megaplex is almost complete and we are in the process of applying for the necessary approvals to open the cinema soon, Magar said.