PVR Cinemas on Wednesday opened its first cinema theatre in Jamnagar, Gujarat. The move is in line with the company’s expansion strategy in tier 2 and tier 3 markets. As per Sanjeev Kumar Bijli, joint managing director, PVR Ltd, the company has invested Rs 6 crore in the three screen cinema hall in Jamnagar. “Our expansion strategy was put into effect before the pandemic and nearly 95% of the work was done. Due to the lockdown, the work was halted and we had to push back our timelines. Now, we are gradually finishing the remaining 5% work that was left and going forward with our strategy,” he told BrandWagon Online.
With this opening, PVR strengthens its growth momentum in FY 2021-22 to expand its presence with 849 screens at 177 properties in 72 cities (India and Sri Lanka). Some of the new cities the company expects to enter in the coming months include Thiruvananthapuram, Nizamabad, Patna, Patiala, Dhanbad, Ajmer, Bhubaneswar, among others.
While the exhibition industry has been one of the worst affected media businesses by the pandemic, Bijli is optimistic about the future with movies such as Fast and Furious 9, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Bell Bottom being received well by the viewers and drawing in footfall. “Currently, regional movies are driving revenue for us as Hindi movies are not being released with the exception of Bell Bottom. This is primarily because theatres in Maharashtra are still not allowed to open. However, we expect this to change once theatres in Mumbai are allowed to open as that will encourage the producers to release Hindi films in theatres,” he clarified.
The new three-screen multiplex is equipped to offer a hygienic, safe and secure cinematic experience along with new-age technological solutions, curated food offerings and modern interiors to address the out-of-home entertainment needs of people. Further, in order to minimise human contact, digital transactions have been enabled via e-wallets. Use of UV cabinets to sterilise all food packaging, Installation of fiber and glass shields, social distancing marked queuing are some of the safety protocols that have been adopted. “The three-screen cinema in Jamnagar is specially designed keeping in mind the requirement of the discerning patrons of the region exploring world class out-of-home entertainment experiences. We are looking forward to bringing the modern cinema experience to smaller markets,” Gautam Dutta, CEO, PVR Ltd, said.