South Korean exhibition group CJ CGV has signed a deal with IMAX Corporation to install 15 screens in its new multiplexes in China, which brings CJ CGV's IMAX commitment to a total of 65 screens in South Korea and China. CJ CGV and its Primus subsidiary currently operate 91 sites with 726 screens across Korea. The group opened its first multiplex in Shanghai in 2006 and now has 8 in total throughout China.
The deal with CJ CGV further strengthened IMAX presence in China. In June this year, IMAX signed a five-screen deal with Chinese exhibitor Omnijoi Cinemas, and four screens with Broadway Cinema in February. Now the additional 15-screen deal with CJ CGV brings the total number of IMAX screens to 240 in Greater China, and 337 in the Asia Pacific region. The Asia Pacific region is a fast increasing market for IMAX compared with other regions in the world.
In Europe, IMAX continues to expand with its existing exhibitor clients. An agreement of five screens was signed in October with Pathé Theatres (three screens) in Netherlands, Cineplexx (one screen) in Austria, and Odeon & UCI Cinemas Group (two screens) in UK.
IMAX also entered new territories in 2012 to widen its global presence. IMAX signed an agreement with Caspian Capital Limited in June to open first IMAX theatre in Azerbaijan, which brings to 50 the total number of IMAX theatres open or contracted to open in Russia and the CIS region. In May, IMAX also signed its first contract in Pakistan with Cine Star Cinema with three screens, which supposed to be installed from 2013.