PVR expects ‘biggest’ March quarter in 2022 on easing Covid curbs


Multiplex chain operator PVR Ltd is looking forward to having “the biggest quarter” in the January-March 2022 period of the ongoing fiscal as more states lift COVID-19 related restrictions with a huge amount movie releases lined up in the coming months, company Chief Executive Officer Gautam Dutta said on Tuesday.

The company is also bullish on audiences coming back to theatres with occupancy levels at theatres gradually inching towards pre-pandemic levels across the country.

“We seem to be all gearing up towards fantastic months ahead. There is a huge amount of content lined up for December, January, February, and March and we are very very confident that we will have the biggest quarter starting January to March, which is technically our fourth quarter,” Dutta said while addressing a virtual press conference at the launch of a co-branded debit card with Kotak Mahindra Bank.

It is estimated that almost 100 movies are up for release in the coming months, Kotak Mahindra Bank President – Products, Alternate Channels, and Customer Experience Delivery Puneet Kapoor said.

Elaborating on the reasons for PVR’s bullishness, Dutta said with the easing of COVID-19 related restrictions, more than 50% of the states where PVR operates have allowed 100% occupancy.

“The balance 50 (%) hovers around 50, 60 and 70% (occupancy)…We should be working towards 100% occupancy now. And as I said a huge quarter is anticipated, starting from December right till March,” he added.

In terms of restrictions, he said, “We believe that most of them (states) would possibly take another couple of weeks. Every week we get one of the two states lifting those embargoes. So we believe that over the next four to five weeks, all these embargoes should go.”

As far as audiences coming back to theaters, he said the company is very bullish and cited the example of the recent Hindi movie ‘Sooryavanshi’ on which “we saw one of our best weekends ever”.

Punjab as a region is now performing 15% higher than pre-COVID, Dutta said adding “South has already recovered to about 90-95%. North is also at about 80-85% of pre-COVID”.

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