HYDERABAD: With the number of smart phone users rising and more and more movie goers preferring to book tickets through mobile or online mode, online movie ticketbooking companies are bullish about growth prospects. While BookMyShow and TicketNew are the leading players in the space, many smallers are also present. Digital payment service providers like Paytm also now facilitate online ticket booking, pointing to the potential this segment presents.
“The total size of the movie ticket-booking business is estimated at about $2 billion in India, out of which online movie booking accounts for just around 15 per cent. This presents huge scope for growth and the rise in smart phone users further increases scope, as movie goers are increasingly moving towards mobiles rather desktops and laptops to make online bookings. While we are present in over 4,500 screens across more than 400 cities, in 21 states and five Union territories, we are now focusing more even on tier-2 and tier-3 cities,” said Ramkumar Nammalwar, founder of Ticketnew.
The Indian online movie ticket segment is seen as a sunrise sector with even international players eyeing it. Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group has acquired a majority stake in TicketNew, pointing to the potential in the sector. With increasing internet and smartphone penetration, more people are realising the convenience of online entertainment ticketing, says Ashish Saksena, COO-Cinemas, BookMyShow. He points out that the overall market share for online transactions has grown multi-fold, allowing players to grow considerably faster than the industry in gross box office collection and admission numbers.
“In countries like China, online movie ticketing contributes to as high as 80 per cent of overall movie-ticketing. However, in India currently it is just 10-12 percent, leaving us huge headroom to grow. This number is higher for major cities and specifically in multiplexes (30-40 percent), but growth will definitely come in faster as the internet penetration increases," he adds. On the flip side, there are challenges. Besides being strong in technology, a company has to have extensive relationships with movie screens owners. Only those strong online and offline are set to survive and grow in the long run.