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by 71.4% y-o-y to R28 crore.
The country’s second-largest multiplex chain, Inox, which has 288 screens, saw its Q2 FY14 revenues surge 14% to R236.8 crore compared to the same period last year. “There has been a steady growth in our business. We’ve delivered robust revenues and improved the Ebitda margin,” Inox Leisure CEO Alok Tandon said. “Overall, the multiplex business is on a healthy track. The only area of concern is the absence of good real estate options and a slowdown in realty as it stalls or delays the sector’s expansion plans.”
In the next one year, PVR, which has 398 screens along with Cinemax, plans to add about 130 screens, while Mexican chain Cinepolis has an ambitious target to add 400 screens by 2016.
It currently operates 65 screens across the country. Inox Leisure aims to add 75-100 screens to its current 288 screens by 2014. Reliance Mediaworks’ Big Cinema, the multiplex chain which recently widened its losses, has been looking for a buyer for a while. The company was in talks with Cinepolis for a possible acquisition, though the talks fell through.
Sources say Big Cinemas is close to putting together a plan to scale up and return to profitablity.
India churns the highest number of films per year. According to recent Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) estimates, the annual film count went up from 1,255 in 2011 to 1,602 films in 2012 and this number is set to grow further.
Yet, there are just 10 screens per million people here compared to the United States, where there are 120 screens per million.
With digitisation, big-budget movies are now released across as many as 3,500 screens as compared to 1,000 three years ago. Even if cinema hall owners charge a premium of 15-30% during weekends, there will be buyers. As of now, at least 77% screens have been digitised.
“Multiplexes are growing their non-ticket revenues, chiefly from food and beverages and advertising which become critical for profitability to improve. While F&B’s revenue contribution is about 50% in this business, in India it is still at 18-20% levels,” said Ashish Shukla, country head, Cinepolis India.