Saudi Arabia movie theater market had begun taking shape after a 35-year hiatus. The Saudi government, in a bid to augment the entertainment opportunities across Saudi Arabia, enabled screening of movies during 2018. AMC Cinemas was the first international movie theater chain to function in Saudi Arabia with the KAFD screen that accommodates 490 patrons. As of December 2019, more than 9 movie theaters are operational in the Saudi Arabia, with a maximum in Riyadh.
According to the report analysis, ‘Saudi Arabia Leisure and Entertainment Market Outlook to 2025-Movie Theatre Market by Revenue (Ticket Admissions, Food and Beverage Sales, Advertisements and Sponsorships), Amusement Park Industry (Ticket Admissions, Food and Beverage, Merchandize, Games and Others) and Alternate Entertainment Avenues (VR Gaming, Bowling Alley and Trampoline Parks)’ states that as of 2019, the movie theater industry is concentrated among 4 players, with VOX Cinemas operating 7 out 9 theaters as of 2019. The Saudi Authority for a movie, General Entertainment Authority has conveyed the movie theater licenses to 7 operators as of January 2020. Presently, 4 cinema chains are functional in Saudi Arabia, namely Dubai based VOX, and USA based AMC, Saudi based MUVI Cinemas and Middle Eastern-based Empire Cinemas. Presently, VOX controls the market leadership position with more than 7 functional theaters across KSA, followed by AMC and MUVI with 2 areas each. Entities compete on the basis of ticket prices, type of screen formats, F&B packages and discount offers among others.
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Not only has this, these companies in the market are efficiently working for keep maintaining the governing position, leading the highest market growth, obtaining the competitive edge and generating the highest percentage of revenue by analysing the strategies and policies of government as well as contenders, increasing the features and benefits of such, improving the qualitative and quantitative measures of such and spreading the awareness connected to the applications and advantages of such.
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The nature of competition is fragmented in terms of amusement parks. The region has several amusement parks, family entertainment centers, water parks, and theme-based parks. Al-Shallal Theme Park is the oldest functioning theme park across Saudi Arabia and holds the greatest market share in terms of revenue as well as admissions as of 2019. Other parks entail Al Hokair Land and Atallah Happy Land which have the next greatest revenues.
The nature of competition in terms of controlling companies is temperately concentrated as Majid Al Futtaim and Al Hokair group are market leaders with annual revenues from entertainment and family-oriented destinations surpassing SAR 1 Billion for 2019. Fakieh Group is another holding company, which possesses Al-Shallal theme park.
Furthermore, for the duration of 2019-20205, the movie theater industry in Saudi Arabia is predicted to augment at a CAGR of 15% as more movie theater chains enter the market. As movie theaters face footfall challenges, discounts, movie passes can be projected on tickets as well as greater margins on F&B sales. For nationals with greater spending capacity, premium movie viewing formats such as 4D, IMAX and other deluxe offerings such as fine dining and private viewing will aid the movie theater operators to gain greater revenue from fewer admissions.
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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications