By: Settu Shankar
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
Theatre chain Pyramid Saimira Theatre (PSTL) has become the first Indian theatre chain to enter the US market. PSTL has acquired Texas-based Fun Asia for an undisclosed sum to expand its business in the North American market.
The acquisition was made through PSTL's US subsidiary Pyramid Saimira Entertainment America Inc. London-based Elara Capital Plc was the advisor to PSTL in this transaction.
Nine-year-old Fun Asia, which operates 11 screens in Houston and six in Dallas besides a radio station and three banquet halls, is presently the largest Asian theatre chain in the US.
"The US and Canada are big markets for Hindi and south Indian movies, and we intend to increase the number of screens of Fun Asia in the US to 60 by the end of this fiscal from the present 23 screens by expanding to about 15 locations," P. S. Saminathan, managing director, PSTL, said.
PSTL has four subsidiaries for film production, distribution and international theatre business, and each one will have separate fund-raising programmes, he added.
The company is also looking at aggressively expanding in the high-margin food and beverages business to boost its bottom line. Pyramid Saimira, which went public in the end of 2006, reported net sales of Rs.144 crore and net profit of Rs.15 crore for the quarter ended September 2007. Net sales and net profit for the half-year ended September 30, 2007 stood at Rs.266.90 crore and Rs.31.12 crore, respectively.