LONDON – CJ-CGV, the South Korean cinema group, has become the world’s number five multiplex chain, as measured by admissions. The company expects to sell over 100 million tickets this year.
The company is the market leader in South Korea, but its figures are significantly boosted by its activities overseas, which include 40 complexes and 296 screens, accounting for a quarter of its total screen count.
According to 2012 data from exhibition research company IHS, the four chains above CGV each have significantly larger circuits Regal Cinemas (6,862 screens, 235 million admissions), AMC (4,804 screens, 211 million admissions), Cinemark (3,918 screens, 134 million admissions) and Cinepolis (2,600 screens, 134 million admissions). At the end of 2012 CGV had 111 sites with 858 screens and managed 92 million admissions.
CGV, a part of the CJ foods to fertilizers conglomerate which also includes CJ Entertainment, opened the first Korean multiplex in 1998 and built its first overseas site in Shanghai in 2006. It is also the market leader in Vietnam, following the acquisition two years ago of MegaStar.
“CGV will continue its international growth with our innovative ‘Cultureplex’ model as the main driver, said CJ-CGV CEO Jung Seo in a statement. “By 2020 we aim to become the world’s top multiplex expanding our theatres, including 4DX to 60 countries worldwide.”
4DX, its proprietary technology providing a four dimensional cinema experience, has been installed by exhibitors in 22 countries, as revenue sharing ventures.
The multiplexing of Korea has contributed to the transformation of the country’s cinema market. With over 200 million tickets sold already this year, per capita cinema-going will reach 4.12, compared with 1.0 16 years ago in 1997. The chains also claim apart of the kudos for the strong performance of local films, which this year will enjoy a 60% market share.
CGV has also become involved in independent film distribution through an initiative called ‘Movie Collage’, which will be involved with over 100 titles this year.