UFO Moviez to invest Rs 1 billion in equipping 1000 cinemas with 3D

MUMBAI: UFO Moviez will invest close to Rs 1 billion (Rs 100 crore) to provide state of the art digital cinema systems with satellite based delivery of 3D content to theatres across the country.

As part of the 3D roll out strategy, UFO plans to enable 1000 screens all over India over the next two years, of which the first 500 screens will be converted by end of current year and the next 500 by the end of 2011.

Speaking to Businessofcinema.com UFO director Ameya Hete said, "The funds to convert these theaters into 3D will come from the company’s internal accruals."

UFO Moviez India joint managing director Kapil Agarwal added, "This is a win-win for exhibitors and studios that will generate immediate additional revenues from greater attendance and 3D ticket premiums on the one hand, while the Indian audiences can enjoy locally created 3D content on the other. This will provide a bridge for the digital transition to 3D within the Indian film fraternity."

"3D is the next game changer for the Indian film industry. UFO is committed to bringing in this next wave of change with an innovative business model. This initiative is an important step in our strategy to leverage the future growth potential of 3D technology. UFO’s thought leadership and innovation seeks to deliver great services that will provide wider access to audiences to compelling content, whenever and wherever," he added

Hete said, "3D technology has evolved with time over the years. With many flavors of 3D systems available in the market the choice of the appropriate technologies and their integration has a direct impact on the quality of 3D. It is very hard for the theaters to make a choice of the correct technology for their theaters and the wrong choice can have long lasting cost implications. Having leadership in the digital media delivery and exhibition space, UFO has now developed an end-to-end platform for the ingestion, distribution and exhibition of 3D content that makes 3D easy for content providers, exhibitors and the consumers."

In a manner similar to the roll out of UFO digital cinema across India, this venture too marks UFO’s foray in bringing out an integrated business model for 3D services.

"We realize that till we have a critical mass of 3D ready screens in India, the flow of content will not start. As such we will create an ecosystem to foster 3D content in India. Not only will UFO invest in 3D screens but also make significant investments in creating an infrastructure to create 3D content. UFO will soon provide end-to-end business solution and services ranging from acquisition, post production to exhibition of 3D content," Agarwal informed.

According to Agarwal, the selection of the screens will depend on appropriate ticketing system while the larger screens and multiplexes will be the first choice. He said, "We have created a greater reach to the content owners, we created a digital highway and now are creating a 3D highway and anyone can pay the toll and move forward.

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