By the end of this financial year, PVR and Cinemax together will add another 60 screens across the country and substantially increase footfall in their halls.
In the first six months of this year, PVR attracted 16 million moviegoers to its screens, but, now, together it hopes the number will jump to 56 million by the end of this financial year ( PVR alone would have done around 32 million ) and 78 million in two years.
Bijli is not averse to keeping the two brands separate in most of the cities.
"Globally, it is not unusual to have two three different brands. However, in some places, like in Delhi, where Cinemax has one property, it makes sense to call it PVR as that would reduce costs," says Bijli.
He is also looking at ways to increase revenues by using innovative ways of marketing, rather than extracting more revenue share from producers.
For instance, in Bangalore, PVR recently offered tickets for Rs 100 on Wednesday and attracted about 7000 viewers on that day.
This also, of course, had a rub off effect on its food & beverage income, which is generally 20 per cent of the income from each viewer.
In Delhi, in some properties, PVR offers tickets for Rs 50 for the morning shows to attract more crowd.
In 2005, Bijli was watching a movie in one of his halls in Delhi when he got an SMS from his friend saying the Ambanis, through Adlabs, were entering the exhibition business.
"The news shook the industry, as till then this was a small- and medium-level business, which had not attracted big companies. But, it was also a vindication that we were in the right business," he says.
With the Cinemax acquisition, it is also a vindication of Bijli's belief in a business which he began from scratch 17 years ago.
Image: Bijli (left) with Nargis Fakhri.