At a business briefing to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during his first official trip to India, IMAX Corporation and PVR Cinemas announced an agreement for five new IMAX theatres. In attendance were Mr. Ajay Bijli, Managing Director and Chairman of PVR Cinemas, and Mr. John Schreiner, Senior Vice President of Theatre Development, Russia, CIS, Middle East and India of IMAX Corporation, who provided details on their business partnership to the Prime Minister.
The new IMAX theatres will be located in major metropolitan markets in a combination of new and existing flagship sites. The agreement brings PVR Cinemas’ total IMAX commitment to 15 theatres and strengthens the exhibitor’s position as IMAX’s largest partner in India.
“Our agreement is a direct result of the success of our IMAX box office, which, since 2016, has increased by 50% as the demand for IMAX among moviegoers continues to build,” said Mr. Ajay Bijli. “We are delighted to strengthen our longstanding, successful partnership with IMAX, which we view as a competitive advantage to help solidify our leading position in India’s exhibition market.”
“We are very encouraged by our recent success and growth in India – where our IMAX theatres are performing extremely well at the box office and where we have doubled our network in the last two years. This momentum would not be possible without the support of PVR, a tremendous IMAX advocate and world-class exhibitor,” said Mr. Richard L. Gelfond, CEO, IMAX. “India is the fourth-largest market by box office and one we view as a long-term growth opportunity. We also continue to re-master more and more Indian movies, and had record-breaking success with Padmaavat earlier this year. We believe these factors, combined with expanding our partnership with India’s top exhibitor PVR, will help set the stage for continued expansion in this important emerging market.”
In January, IMAX released Viacom18 Motion Pictures’ film Padmaavat, which marked the fourth local-language IMAX Indian film release and the first to be presented in the IMAX 3D format. Padmaavat is now the Company’s highest-grossing local Indian release and third highest-grossing IMAX film overall in the country. The Company expects to announce more Indian IMAX movies for this year.
PVR operates a cinema circuit of 625 screens at 134 properties in 51 cities with seven IMAX screens in Delhi, Gurugram, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Noida that are among India’s top-performing IMAX theatres of 2017.