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Covid2019 pushes PVR into the red in Q2

The multiplex chain reported a net loss of Rs 184 crore.

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NEW DELHI: Multiplex chain PVR closed the quarter ended 30 September 2020 in the red with a net loss of Rs 184 crore, as compared to profit of Rs 48 crores during the corresponding period of last year. This comes as no surprise, considering that cinemas were shut all over the country for the better part of the year under government directives to check the spread of Covid2019.

The consolidated revenues for the quarter were Rs 111 crore as compared to Rs 979 crore during the corresponding period of last year. Consolidated EBITDA loss for the quarter was Rs 14 crore as against a positive EBITDA of Rs 324 crore in the same period last year.

The company clarified that results for Q2 are not comparable with last year’s results due to temporary closures of cinemas and suspension of operations impacting the business.

The multiplex group has initiated a series of short-term and long-term measures to aggressively control costs as well as augment liquidity. It further strengthened its cost control measures resulting in 71 per cent savings YoY in total fixed costs excluding rent and CAM.

Monthly fixed cost excluding rent and CAM dropped to Rs 24 crore in the quarter as against Rs 86 crore in Q2 FY20. PVR is in active engagement with its developer partners for discussions on rent and CAM and so far settlements have been reached for more than 60 per cent of cinemas offering PVR complete rent waiver for lockdown period and significant discounts on rent post reopening.

Discussions with balance developers are in progress and are expected to close once cinemas are allowed to reopen in those states.

MHA has, in its Unlock 5.0 guidelines, allowed cinemas to reopen from 15 October onwards with 50 per cent capacity. So far, 16 states and UTs, where PVR has presence, have permitted cinemas to restart operations. Out of total 831 screens of the company 575+ have received permission to reopen. PVR is welcoming back its patrons with several celebratory promotions and offers, opportunity for private screenings, film festivals and a fresh new menu to make the movie watching experience truly delightful.

PVR MD & chairman Ajay Bijli said, “I am extremely pleased to report that most of our cinemas, which had shut down due to the pandemic in March have been allowed to reopen. We are eagerly waiting for re-opening of other states, specifically Maharashtra and Telangana, so that business can gradually get back to normal. We are taking all possible precautions so that both our customers and employees feel safe while visiting their favourite cinema. Many of our patrons have responded positively and we’re fully prepared to give them the same immersive movie viewing experience the way we had done before. We are hopeful that once the new content is released the business will gradually recover.”

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