Mexico- based cinema operator Cinepolis has revealed its expansion plans in India by announcing that it will set up 40 new screens over a period of 12 months in the country. The company will invest Rs 130 crore ($ 28 million) for the purpose.
The company had earlier targeted to set up 500 screens in different cities in India by the year 2016. The company had calculated its per-screen investment at $700,000. The recently unveiled plans is part of that target and includes the setting up of screens in Bangalore, Jaipur, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Thane, Surat, Ahmedabad, Patna and Bhopal and Cinepolis has already commenced talks with developers for setting up the theatres. The multiplex operator is especially looking to integrate its theatres in large malls, so that its customers can have a shopping experience as well.
Cinepolis will also build a megaplex, which is a multiplex consisting of more than 10 screens, in Magarpatta near the city of Pune in early 2011. The project will be followed by another megaplex in Thane district. Megaplexes would allow the company to conduct 50 shows in a single day. They would also run shows of art and developing films besides commercial movies, although the seating capacity would vary for screens displaying art cinema and commercial cinema. The company said that its theatres would also offer a platform for small-budget movies as well. Cinepolis also said that the megaplexes can be sustained in the long run owing to the large number of movies produced in India each year totaling at almost 1,000. So the theatres would never fall short of movies to show.
Cinepolis revealed that it was not aggressively looking to acquire any existing multiplex or multiplex chain. The company, which started its India operations last year with a multiplex in the Celebrations Mall in Amritsar, had talked to DLF-owned DT cinemas before but the talks were not successful.
According to the company, India was a market that offered a lot of potential. The ratio of number of screens to the population in India was 0.6 screens for every million people. The same ratio in the US was 120 screens for every 1 million people while in Mexico it was 40 screens for 1 million people. Indians, the company noted, were also increasing their spending on movies due to the increase in the per capita income. The reduction of demand in the Mexican market was also a reason for Cinepolis to look for newer markets abroad.
Cinepolis was established in Mexico in 1971 and ranks fifth among the largest movie theatre chains in the world. The company owns over 2,250 screens present in six countries and employs over 15,000 people globally.?