PVR-INOX to magnify sector's presence, reach: INOX's Siddharth Pavan Jain


The proposed merger of PVR and INOX Leisure will create a mega entity which will drive down costs as well as expand the presence of film exhibition industry in India, said INOX Leisure's Director Siddharth Pavan Jain.

Further, the new entity is expected to recover faster from the hammering meted out by the pandemic and the ongoing onslaught by OTT platforms.

Under the amalgamation plan, Jain is slated to be appointed as non-executive non-independent director of the combined entity.

In a conversation with IANS, Jain pointed out magnitude of under penetration of screen availability in India.

"Globally, China has some 70,000 screens, we only have around 9,500. India is grossly under penetrated when it comes to the number of available screens."

"The merger will allow us to reach new markets in tier-II and III cities and even increase our presence in areas located in tier-I cities."

Besides, he said that on an average the new entity plans to open up around 200 properties per year, thereby, increasing the size of the entire industry.

"The proposed entity has a presence in 109 cities and there is a potential to get into 200 more cities. The merger will usher in investments into the sector that has been heavily impacted by the pandemic," he said.

Furthermore, Jain cited that a larger presence of the sector will attract new content producers.

The trend will be positive for the real estate industry as well.

"This partnership will enable cost optimisation and increase productivity through scale. Moviegoers, stakeholders and content producers will vastly benefit out of it."

Notably, INOX promoters -- Jain family -- will have 16.66 per cent stake in the combined entity, while PVR promoters will have 10.62 per cent stake.

Last Sunday, the film exhibition majors announced the proposed merger.

Accordingly, the respective Boards of PVR and INOX Leisure approved an all stock amalgamation of INOX with PVR.

"The amalgamation is subject to approval of the shareholders of PVR and INOX respectively, stock exchanges, SEBI and such other regulatory approvals as may be required," a joint statement said on Sunday.

"Upon obtaining all approvals, when the merger becomes effective, INOX will merge with PVR."

The shareholders of INOX will receive shares of PVR in exchange of shares of the former at the approved exchange ratio.

As per the statement, Ajay Bijli, who is currently the Chairman and Managing Director of PVR would be appointed as the Managing Director of the new entity and Sanjeev Kumar would be appointed as the Executive Director.

In addition, the combined entity will become the largest film exhibition company in India operating 1,546 screens across 341 properties across 109 cities.

The proposed entity is expected to have more screens, properties and cities by the time of the merger.

Source : IANS