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Mr. Datuk K. Ketheeswaran, Non- Executive Chairman, MidValley Entertainment

Jasmine Kohli / 12:31 , Jan 10, 2011

Mr. Datuk K. Ketheeswaran, Non- Executive Chairman, MidValley Entertainment. He is a Malaysian national and guides the company on crucial policy decisions. Datuk K. Ketheeswaran promoted various companies which have varied businesses viz; plantations, investments, entertainment related businesses etc. He has also served as the President of the Malaysian Associated Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (MAICCI - a national trade organization representing the Malaysian Indian business community). He is the Vice President of NCCIM (National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Malaysia). In the year 2006, Datuk K. Ketheeswaran, through his companies acquired the shares of MidValley Entertainment Limited from the then existing promoters to focus on production, distribution and exhibition of movies business in India. He has many accolades to his name, in 1996, Datuk K. Ketheeswaran was conferred with the Darjah Setia Negeri Sembilan (D.S.N.S.) which carries the title “Dato” by D.Y.M.M. Pemangku Yang Di Pertuan Besar of Negeri Sembilan Darul Khusus, Malaysia. Subsequently, in June 2003, he was conferred the prestigious Panglima Jasa Negara (P.J.N.) by Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Syed Putra Jamalullail on His Royal Highness’ of Malaysia’s 60th birthday celebration, which carries the title “Datuk”.
 
MidValley Entertainment Limited is a leading player in the media and entertainment industry in South India. It is engaged in the media and entertainment activity from concept to completion. Its major businesses are Exhibition and Concept Theatres, Film Production, Distribution, Hospitality, Cine Advertising, etc., MidValley accelerates itself to take entertainment industry to the new arena. MidValley is growing steadily through its focus on strategic business operations and robust business model. It strongly believes in Efficiency and Effectiveness i.e. "Doing the right things and doing things right", and in the right direction.
 
Speaking with Jasmine Kohli of IIFL, Datuk Ketheeswaran, says “ we are foraying into the field of Combined Entertainment Plexes (CEPs) and Drive-In open air theatres by way of organic as well as inorganic growth.”
 
Brief us about the IPO and how do you plan to deploy the funds?
We plan to raise Rs 600mn through an initial public offer (IPO). The issue will open on January 10 and close on January 12.
 
The price band for the IPO has been fixed at Rs 64 to Rs 70 per piece.  Listing is tentatively on Jan 27.
 
The proceed from the issue would to used for production of three south Indian movies; for distribution of south Indian, Bollywood and Hollywood movies; for acquisition of cinema theatres on lease and up gradation of cinema halls with digital equipments and other assets.
 
Give us the break up of the investment to be made?
We plan to spend ~Rs 250mn for modernisation and renovation of cinema infrastructure with digital equipment and other related assets for select 100 screens in south India; Rs 120mn is planned for acquisition of similar business activities and ~Rs 150mn for screening agreements with 300 cinema theatres in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
 
You have an extensive library of films. How do you plan to leverage this content?  
We have library of 650 films, which we continue to monetize year after year. Our content library is our key differentiator and we plan to leverage the content to great extent through our own centres. This is the aspect of the business which drives our portfolio strategy.
 
Any new initiatives on cards for MidValley?
We plan to foray into the field of Combined Entertainment Plexes (CEPs) and Drive-In open air theatres by way of organic as well as inorganic growth. We also propose to renovate without any structural changes, the 100 select theatres where we had entered into screening agreements, earlier.
 
Brief us about your business strategy?
We believe in creating a strong theatre chain in southern India. The strategy for this would be to acquire the existing single screen theatres on lease and convert them into digital theatres. We also plan to improve the ambience in these theatres. We will also bring the latest releases to the theatres for the viewers.
 
Our proposed growth strategy involves entering into strategic partnerships with other screeners in different regions, where we are currently under-represented and, evaluating on a case-by-case basis potential acquisition targets that offer an opportunity to grow our business.
 
Do you see any seasonality in this business?
Yes this business is seasonal in nature. The revenues are higher during the April-June and October- December quarters. Due to festivals in the third quarter, we see an increase in our revenues more during Durga Puja, Diwali and Christmas. Another, season is the summer vacation i.e the (April-June quarter), during which the film industry generally reports higher revenues.
 
How do you view the competition from existing players in the industry?
Competition will always continue to exist, be it from existing players or any new entrants into the industry. We believe that we shall be able to sustain the competition due to our experience and expertise in the integrated structure of our business activities of production, distribution and exhibition. 
 
What are the latest figures on the bottomline and topline?
Our accounting period is from May to April. For, the first quarter of this fiscal we recorded a turnover of Rs 50mn and a PAT of Rs.14mn.

Brief us about your geographical presence and how many screens do you have?
We are present in Chennai, Bangalore, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Pondicherry. Today we have 46 single screens and post listing the number of single screens would go upto 346, this would be between 6-12 months time, post listing.
 
What are the government incentives in the South?
We have good government incentives from the government in the South India. In terms of incentives we have zero percent entertainment tax in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka and 10% entertainment tax in Andhra Pradesh. 
 
Do you see any opportunities overseas?
We see great opportunities in Malaysia and China, but as of now nothing has been chalked out.  
 
What is your message to the shareholders?
We feel it would be a great opportunity for investors to associate themselves with MidValley Entertainment. The current net worth of the company is Rs 550mn and post listing the net worth would be of Rs 1200mn. We are a debt free company. We believe in maximizing the wealth of our shareholders.