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Deloitte: Indian film industry to touch Rs 23,800 crore by 2020

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MUMBAI: Can the Indian film industry come up to scale and rival the US and Canadian box offices? Yes, it can. The potential is huge, says a new report on the Indian cinema industry released by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India at the Indywood Film Carnival taking place during 24-27 September in Ramoji Film City, Hyderabad.

Both, the US and Canada, have a box office of $11 billion annually though they produce less films (700). India, with 1,500 to 2,000 films in more than 20 languages, is the world’s largest film producer and it also has the second highest footfalls at 2.1 billion, just behind China (2.2 billion).

It is growing at a rapid clip of 10 per cent and its gross realisations are at Rs 13,800 crore ($2.1 billion). “This is mainly due to low ticket realizations and occupancy levels, lack of quality content, and rampant piracy,” says the report titled "IndyWood: The Indian Film Industry."

This growth is set to accelerate further to 11.5 per cent CAGR and by 2020 the Indian film industry will gross revenues of Rs 23,800 crore ($3.7 billion). Yes, that’s still not measuring up to the US and Canadian revenues, but given time, the Indian film industry will grow even further.

Says the Deloitte report: “The key growth drivers are rising income levels and a swelling middle class, expansion of multiplexes in smaller cities, investments by foreign studios in domestic and regional productions, growing popularity of niche movies, and the emergence of digital and ancillary revenue streams.”

The report points out that “By 2020, the Indian average household income is expected to reach $18,500 from $8,000 currently with a corresponding middle class of over 90 million people. This level of median household income will drive discretionary spending on leisure and entertainment. The proliferation of internet and smart phone usage has opened up a new platform for film distribution and viewing.”

In all, 43 per cent of revenues for Indian cinema are accounted for by the Hindi film industry with regional and international cinema contributing 50 and seven per cent respectively. Tamil and Telugu movies account for 36 per cent, with other regional languages contributing 14 per cent. The south Indian film industry accounts for Rs 4200 crore, and is growing at 12 per cent CAGR. The Marathi film industry has ballooned to gross revenues of Rs 150 crore and it grew at 40-45 per cent in 2015, even as the Gujarati film business expanded to Rs 55 crore in 2015.

The report says that “cable and satellite rights and online/ digital aggregation revenues are the fastest growing segments, and are expected to grow at a CAGR of about 15 per cent over the period FY6-FY20, driven by rising demand for movies on TV and increasing smartphone penetration across the country respectively. On the other hand, home videos have been shrinking due to increasing piracy and growing popularity of digital platforms. Home video has lost share to video on demand (VOD) through direct-to-home (DTH) operators and over-the-top (OTT) platforms.”

What’s helping contribute to the Indian film industry’s revenues is in-cinema advertising which stood at Rs 630 crore in 2015 and is expected to grow 18-20 per cent annually over the next four years. Demand is expected to rise from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities where retail malls and multiplexes are slated to come up -- which obviously will lead to more screens.

Says the report: “Multiplexes have shown a growth rate of 15 per cent in Indian cities, increasing from 925 in 2009 to 2,100 in 2015. Over 2,000 single screen cinemas have been shut down or converted to multiplexes in the last year mainly due to greater cost of operations (higher entertainment taxes, increase in distributors’ share, and lower ticket prices), non-viability of running on a standalone basis and low occupancy rate. Multiplexes currently account for approximately 26 per cent market share of the screens; however, they contribute more than 40 per cent of box office collections. Wider content and programming flexibility result in higher occupancy and hence profitability of multiplexes. With comparison to growing economies, India has a low penetration of multiplexes with a potential to have almost 7,500-10,000 multiplex screens across the nation.”

Also, film studios will have to start looking at international markets for revenues. Only 15 per cent of Indian cinema makers revenues comes from outside India, while Hollywood earns two-thirds of its revenues outside the US. The report also states that the producers and distributors should start looking at the potential of merchandising, licensing for mobile and games, delivering movies directly to the consumers via the internet or on their smart phones.

Piracy if controlled could also help the Indian film industry which loses nearly Rs 19,000 crore annually to pirate sites. “Over 150 sites thrive on piracy where content is stolen from Indian movies, quick copies are made and distributed globally. Nearly half of the 150 are from the US, followed by 11 from Canada, nine from Panama and six from Pakistan. The top 100 sites make Rs 35 billion ($510 million) highlighting the extent of the issue,” the report highlights.

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