PVR Cinemas : What Moves Movies

Right from the time you buy the movie ticket, till you step out of the
multiplex movie watching is like an absolute experience: the great picture
quality, sound, even the popcorn you pop in are all part of the package.

Things obviously havent changed overnight. Its taken a whole decade to make
the huge difference. And there is little doubt that one player has a huge role
in bringing about this change to the world of entertainmentPVR Cinemas.

The journey started with PVR giving India its very first multiplex in Delhi
in 1997. PVR now has an unmatched 101 screens across the country. Infact,
technology has been a key enabler at PVR right from its inception. Says Atul
Luthra, head of IT, PVR Cinemas, Use of technology has always been key to us
right from the day PVR was started. At present, all our twenty-six cinemas at
various locations are connected to each other by BI applications at the

It has not only helped make all data automated at PVR but has also given a
centralized control, which helps monitor the functioning of this network of
halls. We can see data across all the PVRs, which helps us have a better
perspective on things, adds Luthra.

CRM in Entertainment
With the introduction of online booking, which now constitutes 13% of PVRs
ticket sales, and more competition from other players, there was an increasing
need to be more customer driven.

Atul Luthra, head of IT,
PVR Cinemas
  • Launched Indias first multiplex in India
    PVR Anupam, Delhi
  • Introduced THXapproved three way surround
    sound system with real life sound effects and projection facility with
    latest Xenon based technology
  • First to offer computerized and online
    ticketing with kiosks, mobile based ticketing service, and first to accept
    credit card based ticketing in cinemas

We were receiving a lot of complaints from people who were booking online. A
lot of times payment was deducted from their credit cards but the ticket was not
booked. So all this need to be checked manually at the backend, which was a
difficult task, says Luthra.

Need for automation was felt to minimize this manual interface, and addres
faster solutions to customers problems. The other things that pressed PVR to go
further with technology and continue to be a pioneer in the field of
entertainment was the need to have speedy reaction time to customer mails,
increased advanced online bookings, and customer feedback which was many a times
hushed up at the cinema manager level.

We also wanted to check if there is a pattern in the customer feedback. We
wanted to be sure about how and what we do is being received well, and also the
fact that we wanted to have snapshots of longer periods, says Luthra.

All this and much more prompted PVR to go live with its CRM program, last
year in April. PVR zeroed in on Microsofts application, while an IT team
internally handled the project.

The company is also planning to make the bookings done at the box office
automated, and launch RFID. Right now the footfall is so high, so we will take
some more time to do that.

Meanwhile, currently PVR is working on its new website with a fresh look,
which it will be coming up with in another two to three months. We have planned
a lot of things for online. In a months time we will also be collaborating on
networking sites Facebook and Orkut, adds Luthra.

The company has already launched its digital screens in Delhi and Mumbai,
Recently PVR opened a multiplex in Mumbai comprising seven mainstream digital
auditoriums. The new multiplex has 2k digital cinema, compliant with DCI
technology, and advanced sound and picture quality.

In these times of recession, which has not spared the entertainment industry
either, Luthra says, technology is helping them in get an edge over other

Urvashi Kaul

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