Indian firms to run movie halls in china

Indian firms in a joint venture with Chinese partners and a technology firm of California will run movie halls in China. It is an Indian movie block buster, showing in Chinese movie theatres. The Chinese government is all set to ink a deal with Chennai based cinema hall chain Pyramid Saimira Theatre to run 7000 theatres on the mainland. The deal is expected to be signed shortly. This is a positive move and a sign of Global recognition for Indian movie management.

Pyramid the largest theatre chain in India, will run cinemas distribute films and manage the infrastructure including food courts. The business will be managed by a three – way joint venture between the Chinese Government, California based Technology Company Arasor and Pyramid of India. Sources close to the Pyramid say finer points of the deal are still being thrashed out.

The MD of Pyramid Saimira, confirmed the development and said that the finer points are under discussions for several ventures. They will make the formal announcement of the deals only after all micro details are worked out and the deal is signed.

Entertainment industry sources say Pyramid has got a foothold in the deal with the help of Arasor, with which it has a tie-up for distributing films digitally in India. Dr Simon Cao chairman of Arasor, is a prominent Chinese scientist in America and was named the godfather of WDM technology an advanced fiber optic communication process. Dr Cao will also accompany Chinese president Hu Jintao as a part of the trade delegation to India in November 2006.

As a part of the deal the Chinese government will transfer these 7000 theatres to the joint venture company on a long lease. The partners will then use their capital to upgrade refurbish these theatres with the latest digital technology. Arasor will provide the new projectors, servers, wireless and two-way communication links.

Pyramid will source films and manage the retail end at the theatres. As a part of the deal the Chinese government will also allow the new company to source 150 films each from Hollywood and India every year. Pyramid and Arasor are expected to invest $10 million each as equity capital for the venture.

There are over 38,000 Theatres in China, all of them owned and run by the government. There are tough regulations that allow only a stipulated number of foreign films to be imported into China every year. The Chinese produce nearly 150 movies every year and visit the theatres 12 billion times.

This deal will also make it possible that demand is created for selected Indian movies in China with Chinese language encoding or dubbing thus benefiting the Indian exports and Indo-China bilateral trade resulting into a win-win situation for India and as well as China.