PVR is on track to open a total of 125 new screens during FY2023: Gautam Dutta

by Anna Munhin Aug 1, 2022 News
PVR is on track to open a total of 125 new screens during FY2023: Gautam Dutta

Since its come-back after the Pandemic, the in-cinema advertising space has been innovative. For the first time in India, it has introduced 270 degree on-screen advertising in cinemas. This platform has been used by the first advertiser to launch a new product. In Delhi, Gurugram, Mumbai and Bangalore, the product is being displayed for a week.

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3D Projection mapping on the side walls is powered by hybrid technological integration and is part of the differentiated offering from PVR. Projection mapping can give the content a new lease on life.

The financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2022. Q1 FY'23 was the best quarter in the history of the company in terms of revenue, earnings and profits. On the back of global and local tentpoles, the company recorded the highest ever ATP of Rs 250. The quarter was marked by the release of some of the biggest domestic hits like KGF: Chapter 2 and RRR, as well as Hollywood tentpoles like Doctor Strange and Top Gun. The net box office of KGF 2 was over 120 million dollars, making it the highest grosser in the company's history.

In a conversation with Adgully, Gautam Dutta, CEO of PVR, spoke about the vision behind the in-cinema advertising innovation, how the cinema business has performed in the past year, and much more.

The first ever in-cinema advertising concept is being launched.

Cinema has been unique in breaking the inertia of advertising. Cinemas have been working in the area of on-screen innovation to drive more excitement for brands. Consumers are usually indifferent to advertising and the usual way of advertising on the screen doesn't appeal to them. To grab the attention of the audience, we needed to make our game better. Constant feedback as to how to build communication that is tailormade for cinemas and works the best in cinemas was received by us in our conversations with clients. One effort towards that is the introduction of in-cinema advertising. Cinema advertising has been successful in reinforcing the fact that it is an effective medium for brand engagement, unlike traditional media which are passive in its consumer engagement.

The in-cinema advertising industry has grown because of digital technology.

The following technologies are included in the launch of Experiential Cinema Advertising. The 3D Projection Mapping powered by hybrid technological integration will lead to a visual striking almost to a magical effect helping brands to grab the attention of the audience by connecting with their emotions and feelings.

There is a projection mapping.

  • 270 Degree Screen Projection- It uses adjacent walls of Audis in addition to the Main Screen.
  • Laser Projection – For high impact  image creation on screen as well as adjacent walls
  • Mist Projection
  • Interactive and Innovative services for executing Product Launch / Dealers’ Meet / Corporate Events - Within auditorium.
  • On-Screen Advertising Innovation with Audience Engagement

Holographic technology, augmented reality, virtual reality and mobile apps are just some of the technologies available. There are Fog Screen Projection, Interactive Drumming, and other things in the cinema advertising space.

Mobile phones, automobiles, consumer durables, and apparels are some of the sectors that would be interested in experimenting with this offering.

Who are you partnering with to advertise in-cinema?

The innovation in cinema advertising is being done in partnership with the XPERIA Group, which is an OOH media company with different media of advertising.

What more can we expect from the company?

PVR is going to break the monotony and push the boundaries of on-screen cinema advertising to create a larger than life and immersive experience of the brand messaging. The recall value of existing video content is increased by cinema advertising.

How did the launch of an NFT and RRR go for you?

As a result of its association with D.V.V. Entertainment, the producers of 'RRR', the exclusive 'PVRRR' NFT was launched. The winners of the contest will be able to own exclusive collectibles of the movie. This was created to reach a new generation of movie goers. It gave die-hard fans access to digital collectibles of the movie and gave them an exclusive social experience to engage with the film digitally. The winners were given the opportunity to own a timeless and unique digital art created on the movie.

How have cinema advertising trends evolved over the years?

Cinema advertising has played strategically, that is, active consumer engagement through its BTL offering under one roof.

There have been many examples of brand integrations in cinema. Recently, we witnessed an interesting case-study of brand integration and Experiential marketing in our customer care program where a leading personal care brand was brought on board as a hygiene partner and its brand got organically integrated in the cinema environment to provide a Covid-safe movie.

In a rapidly evolving and accessible digital world where the relationship between brands and consumers is becoming more transactional and passive, the off-screen Experiential Advertising in cinema is finding its new high of popularity. The box office, lobby, washrooms and exit area in the cinemas are some of the places where brand display, activation or product sampling is required to drive brand engagement.

Cinemas are using technology to help brands identify and create better traction with their TG and add more dimensions to their metrics.

Is the cinema business doing well? The pre-pandemic period was comparable to this one.

The company reported the highest ever full year average price of Rs 235 and the highest ever full year average price of Rs 123. A steady flow of new content from end February onwards resulted in a bounce back in theatrical admissions in March. We had the highest admissions in the month of March.

The company recorded the best quarter in its history in terms of revenue, earnings and profits. 2.5 million people visited our cinemas during the quarter, a bounce-back from the previous quarter. As compared to the pre-pandemic period, the average ticket price grew by 23% and the average F&B spend per patron increased by 32%.

The company is on track to open a total of 125 new screens in FY23, thanks to the revival of its capex plans. In this year's fi­scal year, a third of the new additions will be in Tier 2 and 3 cities. 9 new cities will be entered by the company during the year.

South or Bollywood movies have made more money for the theaters.

Regional films make up a large portion of box office receipts in India. There were 757 films released in the year 2021. The highest number of releases were in Tamil and Telugu. Markets rebounded faster when there were fewer lockdowns in the south. The industry was surprised by the performance of regional movies dubbed in Hindi in the last half of the year. The Hindi version of Pushpa: The Rise - Part 1 made more money than the other two movies in India.

The changing trend of multilingual content doing well at a pan India level reflects the growing acceptability of non Hindi content amongst audiences. The proliferation of OTT platforms has led to the consumption of foreign and regional content on these platforms over the past two years.

What has your relationship with InOX been like? Is it going according to plan?

The merger is going well. The proposed scheme of merger has been given the go-ahead by the stock exchanges. In the next couple of weeks, we will apply for the approval of the scheme of merger before theNCLT.