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Nigerian cinemas to raise ticket prices

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Cinema companies are gearing up to increase ticket prices across their locations in Nigeria, as they fight to remain in business and competitive after over six months shutdown.

Following the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak in Nigeria, the Federal Government closed entertainment centers to curb the virus – the cinema business was greatly affected.

It was on lockdown longer than the aviation and hospitality business. During the period of lockdown, zero tickets were sold and no admission was recorded.

During the six months period, Genesis Cinema, FilmOne, Silverbird and Ozone cinema, including other small outdoor screens were unable to generate revenue.

Nine months after reopening, cinemas are now considering ways to recover revenue losses due to the onslaught of COVID-19.

Coupled with weakening naira and dollar rise, as well as inflation hike, cinema heads said they have only one option – increase cinema price by 100%.

According to the Executive Director of Genesis Group of Cinemas, Ope Ajayi, ticket price will hit N5,000 in the coming months. He said it is inevitable.

“It’s inevitable. The dollar is moving against us, inflation is moving against us. It’s inevitable – I think you are going to start seeing prices around N5000 per ticket at the end of the year – And that’s the reality of the times that we are in”, he told Arise TV on Monday.

Cinemas will be shifting the cost burden of its challenges to customers to stay afloat, and Moses Babatope, the co-founder of FilmOne Entertainment Group, said it’s a normal thing.

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While defending the decision which is yet to take effect, Babatope said cinema companies have for years not changed their ticket price, but rising cost of operation has set in motion, a need to review prices upward.

“I think with everything going on with the economy, global economy, the impact of the pandemic, the fact that ticket prices over the last four, five years have remained static, and we’ve still improved in the quality of services given our guests.

“We are still getting some of the best products in, the cost of advertising and marketing experiences are very high, the cost for our input for retail products are high.

“We have no choice for us to be able to survive, for us to be able to maintain the level of experience our guests have become accustomed to, and for us to remain competitive, I think that ticket price increases are just normal for us to stay afloat”, Babatope said.

By Fakoyejo Ayodeji

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