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United MediaWorks, K Sera Sera merge operations

MUMBAI: Eyeing a bigger digital cinema universe, digital cinema technology firm United Media​Works (UMW) has merged operations with K Sera Sera Digital Cinema, a subsidiary of KSS Ltd.

The two companies plan to use their combined energies to develop and consolidate their market position by integrating their operations and technology.

Following the merger, the new venture will serve their existing 600 digital cinema theatres across the country.

Setting an ambitious growth plan, the two companies said in a joint statement that they would invest Rs 100 crore (Rs 1 billion) over the next 2–3 years.

This investment, they claim, will be used to build state-of-the-art and scalable digital cinema technology and on-ground servicing while assisting in digital content security and distribution of the films. “Over the next two years, the joint venture is aiming to capture 25 per cent market share with presence in 2,000 screens across India,” the companies said.

KSS’s Satish Panchariya will chair the new company while UMW’s Ashish Bhandari will be the MD.

As part of their growth strategy, the two companies aim to reach out to both national and regional advertisers, and offer them a pan-India reach. Both the companies are working together to build a common technology platform for content acquisition, content processing and field servicing.

The new platform will not only provide cost-effective solutions to both multiplexes and single-screen theatres, but also offer advertisers a wide reach across the country for better ROIs.

Additionally, the companies will work mutually towards delivering quality services and reaching out to the untapped markets in India. The existing workforce will remain unaffected in both of the companies.

UMW co-founder and joint MD Ashish Bhandari said, “We are really excited to partner K Sera Sera as our goal has always been to support the growth of the media and entertainment industry. With this merger, we are aiming to expand our presence across India and create a benchmark for the entire industry in terms of technology and quality services. This collaboration is also an effort to revive and support the single-screen theatres that face tough competition from the multiplexes in the industry.”

K Sera Sera Digital Cinema CEO Vineeta Dwivedi said, “By joining forces with United Mediaworks and bringing our teams together, we will build on each other’s strengths and bring down our operational costs. We offer producers and exhibitors better services and easier management, and hope to be the most dependable and reliable digital cinema provider in the country. The country’s robust cinema industry will benefit by the coming together of our two companies.”

While UMW claims a strong presence in Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, West Bengal and Karnataka, K Sera Sera is present in the entire Hindi belt, including Delhi, UP, Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.

Going forward, the new venture will look at capturing more markets across southern and eastern India.