Affected by the epidemic, the overall operation of cinemas has been severely damaged this year. The pressure on the downstream of the film industry is not small. At present, there is a continuous lack of blockbusters. The audience is not enthusiastic about watching movies, and the daily box office is bleak. Considering the epidemic situation in foreign countries, there may be fewer blockbusters next year, and cinemas are facing the risk of cut off supply. In addition, there are repeated uncertainties in the epidemic situation. Ye Dong, CEO of Yuedong culture, said in an interview with the Securities Daily that this year may not be the most difficult day in the downstream, and large cinemas and shadow investment companies will still face a severe test of cash flow next year.
Employees are unprepared to wait for money
At the intersection of waianli road and Qinghe River in the North Fifth Ring Road, a huge signboard of Taihe cinema stands high on a two-story building. The bright yellow characters are particularly conspicuous. This is the first movie city of Taihe Group, Beijing Taihe Cinema (Lishuiqiao store). But when the reporter walked into the building on the afternoon of November 30, he found that, compared with the bustling supermarket in the building, the cinema on the second floor had black lights and was chilling.
Obviously, the cinema has closed down. On the glass door at the entrance of the first floor, the reporter found a piece of related matters about the membership card of Taihe studios. The statement said: first, the membership stored value cards that have been handled are permanently valid and can continue to be used normally after the reopening of Taihe studios; second, the right to use the unused exchange certificates, coupons and unlimited number of annual film viewing cards that have not expired after November 28, 2020 will be extended accordingly after the resumption of operation of Taihe studios.
According to the contact information provided in the statement, the reporter dialed the phone number of the relevant contact person, and the employee told the reporter, on November 26, we received a temporary suspension notice, and since November 27, we have closed our business.
Now we just suspend business and keep the balance of the membership card. Once we withdraw the store, we will inform members to return the card as soon as possible. The employee further said that the specific time to resume business still needs to wait for the headquarters to notify, because the business strategy has changed, the headquarters has suspended the business of all cinemas across the country. If there is capital, the adjustment at the end of the year should restore (business) faster.
When the reporter asked whether he knew about the closure arrangement in advance, he said that the notice of suspension was issued in a hurry, and even the employees were caught off guard. I really dont know. The store staff dont know all the time (arrangement). The existing news is that due to the adjustment of business strategy, the business needs to be suspended. The specific time will be announced later. This further notice is also very sudden for us. A while ago, it was playing (showing) well, and all of a sudden, it said it would stop. The staff said.
Finally, he told reporters that at present, the salary of the employees of the store has been overdue for one month.
The reporter found that a number of Taihe studios across the country have closed down. The reporter called Taihe studios in Chongqing, Hangzhou, Xian, Zhengzhou, Tianjin, Tongling, Taian and other cities. Only Shanghai Taihe giant screen studio (screenx118 Plaza store) is still in normal operation, but the store staff told reporters, we are now state-owned studios, not Taihes.
According to relevant reports, at present, Taihes cinemas may be used for pledge after they are closed down. However, there is no final conclusion on whether it will be sold as a whole or continue to operate in the future.
Overall pressure of large cinema
According to the public information, the distribution of Taihe Group in the downstream of the industry is medium and large-scale, relatively high-quality studios. Its first studio is Lishuiqiao store of Taihe Film City in Beijing, which opened on July 15, 2017. At that time, the total box office of Taihe cinema in China was only 11.82 million yuan, ranking 322 among the nearly 500 Film Casting Companies in China. In recent years, the performance and ranking of Taihe cinema have been steadily rising.
As of this year, there are 24 theaters under Taihe, with the box office of 36.59 million yuan since 2020. Taihe has said that it will continue to build new cinemas and plans to spread them all over its square and some real estate projects. According to the information disclosed by Taihe Group in 2017, at that time, the company had already reserved 270 development projects and signed 70 projects. It will focus on the direct development of the first and second tier cities, and deeply cultivate the layout of the third and fourth tier cities.
On the one hand, the financial situation of Taihe Group is worrying, and it is difficult for cinemas to take care of themselves. The companys closure of cinemas also facilitates better attention to the main business, so that its war investment can be better implemented; on the other hand, the epidemic situation has a great impact on cinemas. At the beginning of 2020, cinemas were closed for several months, and many small and medium-sized cinemas were closed. Even if the operation of cinemas was resumed and there was a lack of imported films, the box office on weekdays would remain between 30 million yuan and 40 million yuan, and the whole cinema industry was still under pressure. Some securities analysts said in an interview with Securities Daily.
These analysts believe that large cinemas have been dormant for a long time. As long as the epidemic situation is no longer repeated, it is a good time to acquire the lowest price.