Carnival Cinemas in talks with two foreign PE firms to raise $160M

Carnival Cinemas is in talks with two private equity (PE) firms, located in Singapore and the UK, to fuel its future investment plans worth Rs 1,000 crore over the next five years, a company official said here today.

As part of the company's 'Vision 1000' it plans to increase the number of its screens from 360 to 460 within eight months from now and 1,000 screens in five years, the official said.

Competition Commission of India (CCI) has approved Reliance Media Works' (RMW) sale of Big Cinemas to Carnival Cinemas on March 31.

It was in December last year when Carnival Cinemas had signed a deal to acquire 100 percent stake Big Cinemas of Anil Ambani owned Reliance Media Works which had 266 screens across the country.

"We are planning to increase the number of screens as owned by our group to 1,000 from the existing 360 within five years from now. Out of that 100 screens will come up over a period of eight months. For this, we plan to invest around Rs 1,000 crore and hence we are in talks with two PE firms, one each located in Singapore and the UK," Carnival Group Chairman Shrikant Bhasi told PTI here today.

While the company is looking at mobilising 20 per cent of the fund requirement through the two PEs, the balance amount would be raised through debt.

"As per our plan, we will raise 20 per cent of Rs 700 crore as required by us in the form of future investment plans through the two PEs. We are in talks with a few nationalised banks to raise debt so as to meet the remaining fund requirement for the same," he said.

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