EXCLUSIVE: As theaters continue to remain closed during the coronavirus pandemic, more and more companies and distributors are finding ways to exhibit via streaming platforms. ScreenPlus is the latest to give virtual cinema as they are partnering with cinema software company Vista Group to help cinema exhibitors launch their own VOD platforms to offer at-home streaming to customers.
The new VOD platform is set to launch in every major territory from this week and will offers the potential to unlock a new revenue stream for exhibitors who will be able to activate and customize the platform via their cinema’s website. On top of that, the platform will combine piracy protection and digital rights management of ScreenPlus with Vista’s leading cinema operations, management, loyalty and marketing systems.
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“We couldn’t be more thrilled to announce this partnership with Vista Group,” said ScreenPlus Director, John Barnett. “ScreenPlus is a market-leading platform that connects people with their favorite local cinemas, enabling them to watch new releases through the portal of their cinema, but at home. The cinemas have lost out as a result of the current COVID-19 crisis, but this will potentially generate additional revenue and retain the relationships exhibitors have with their customers.”
“We have been working with [ScreenPlus developers] Shift72 to bring the ScreenPlus solution to our exhibition customers for some time,” said Vista Group Founder and Chief Product Officer, Murray Holdaway. “The outbreak of COVID-19 has seen us accelerate the release of the product to the exhibition market. The templated nature of the solution, which is SaaS based, enables us to stand up customized VOD sites for our customers in very short time frames. Shift72’s technology and delivery are world class, and we are excited to put exhibitors in the driving seat, creating new offerings they can provide to their customers.”
The new platform comes after Kino Lorber’s virtual theatrical exhibition initiative Kino Marquee expanded to 150 theaters while Music Box Films has also created its own initiative Music Box StreamLocal.
Vista Group provides software and technology solutions to the cinema exhibition and distribution market. They currently service large cinema chains around the world including Regal Theatres, Bow Tie Cinemas (USA), Landmark Theatres Cineplex (Canada), Lumiere Pavilions (China), Cineworld Cinemas (UK), Hoyts Cinemas (Australia, New Zealand), among others.
Developed by parent company Shift72 Ltd, ScreenPlus has created delivering platforms that host many of the world’s leading festivals and markets. They recently worked with SXSW, offering a secure platform for press and industry to view this year’s entries. Shift72 has also powered top markets for several years including Cannes Marché du Film and the AFM.
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