Building on strength udeep bogollu reddy, group managing director of mayajaal group of companies ritz gas jet


I literally grew up in various parts of Chennai from Kodambakkam in the early years to Adyar a little later and Besant Nagar and Neelankarai now. Style has always been a subtle part of me front the beginning – right from buying Raymond’s silk fabric for my school uniform to buying the full palette of LEE shirts when they first came to Chennai when I was in first year college some 20 years back! I have always preferred the subtle understated look. I’m very comfortable with my blacks and blues, paired with my fave pair of jeans. But I have become a total Diesel junkie now! I love matching watches with different outfits. electricity distribution companies I used to dress formally sometime back but have now found my comfort dressing in the classic semi-formal pairing of jeans and shirts.

Always was! In those days of broadcast television of Doordarshan , I never used to miss any of the films programs like ‘Chitrahar’ , TV soaps like ‘Ramayan’ or English shows like ‘Giant Robo’ or ‘Knight Rider’ ! I would always be at Tic Tac picking up the latest VHS or VCD or LD of the latest Star Wars, Back to the Future, Indiana Jones, Godfather flicks or I would be at Prarthana Drive-in watching films like Thalapathy! I am a minimum-one-movie-a-day kind of a guy. Now web series have take over with OTT platforms getting into our lives. Still, I clock a minimum of 200 movies a year across languages! I’ve been mad about video games right from the Prince-of-Persia, Pacman Ontario days and crazy about F1 racing and cricket. So I guess Mayajaal was a logical extension of my natural passion and interest.

‘Never Give Up!’ Mayajaal, which opened in the year 2001-2002, was South India’s First Multiplex with 6 screens, a food court and gaming zone. Being a little far from the city and being a highly capital intensive project it was a challenge to run this business in the initial years. Bringing in systems, innovating at that time to have a variable overheads model for weekdays and weekends (as weekends were high on occupancy and weekdays were abysmal), introducing flexible ticket pricing for in-demand films at that time and discounts for others, membership schemes etc. were some of the things done to stabilise the company. Forming a good team with a domain expertise and customer-centric approach was also the key. Slowly things stabilised and people believed that this could be run as a profitable venture.

‘Every Challenge is an Opportunity.’ When the state government brought in tickets controls and ceiling of Rs. 120 in 2006, we decided to increase the screens to grow the business as rates could not be increased. This gave us the economy of scale and helped us grow even though the ticket rate could not be increased year on year. In business, every challenge you face, you have to look at it as in opportunity to grow. Now Mayajaal is a 16-screen state-of-the-art multiplex, and the largest in the country by virtue of the highest number of screens in one complex.

‘Be Open to Change.’ We had a lovely cricket ground and a 40-room resort in the 30-acre property. gas x reviews ratings Both were pet and passionate projects but then at the end of the day were bleeding and not viable. So we decided to convert them into something that which will create a captive consumption market for Mayajaal and also free up cash flows. One became a luxury villa gated community -‘Myans’ and the other a lifestyle apartment complex – ‘EC14’. This has created a captive consumption target audience of 700 families living within the campus over the next 2 years.

Chennai, especially ECR, which is the entertainment highway of Tamilnadu needed this Mayajaal 2.0 reboot! Right from the time it first opened, Mayajaal set benchmarks with a centrally air-conditioned complex featuring a bowling alley, gaming zone, food court, etc. Ticket rates were controlled by the government and kept to ` 120 for over 10 years for which it was not viable to provide the swanky luxe experience on a pure return-on-investment point of view. When we got the hint that the ticket rates would be increased a couple of years back we decided that it was time to up the ante and went in for a total overhaul – state-of-the-art interiors, 16 different interiors for 16 different screens, designed by my father and architect Mohan Reddy who has designed more than 10 million sq.ft of real estate over 40 years (a lot of people don’t know that Rajinikanth’s Raghavendra Kalyana Mandapam was designed and built by us).

Mayajaal 2.0 comes equipped with the best of 3D digital projection with Dolby Atmos sound systems, 4K Harkness High-Gain Screens, live food counters, personalised seat delivery service, plush washrooms, lots of food outlets like Bhangra – Punjabi fine dining, Dominos, WafBites, Tibbs Frankie, Marrybrown, Baskin Robbins and many more. The bowling alley is transformed into a UV-lit Neon Lights discotheque with pool tables like you find in Europe and US. We have an array of Augmented Reality Games, Virtual Reality Games, 5D to 9D Immersive games and many more! The shopping completes the bouquet with a range of products from apparel to gifts to homeware. The multiplex offers a huge range of films to choose from with over 30 films playing 80 shows a day every weekend across 6 languages – Tamil, Telugu, Hindi, English, Malayalam and Kannada. electricity 2015 Nowadays we have started playing Gujarati, Marathi & Bengali films regularly! With so many shows and so many films, you are sure to find something nice to catch at the movies every weekend! We were the first to break the myth of multiplexes not playing dubbed versions of English and Hindi films. Now everyone does it right from PVR. We were one of the first to play films with sub-titles for all other language films on all days so that more people can watch films from other languages. Now even Satyam is playing sub-titles on all days for other language films instead of only Thursdays. I feel that the biggest advantage for Mayajaal over all others is the comfortable parking we provide – ground level parking for over 1000 cars. Overall Mayajaal has now transformed into a swanky hangout where friends and families can spend a whole day doing many things fun and exciting in addition to catching their favourite films!

PVR’s takeover of Satyam was an emotional downer for Chennai due to the city’s huge loyalty and strong connect with the Satyam brand. Satyam did a fantastic job with the renovation of their iconic Mount Road property and all their properties post that kept taking the standard and expectations from customers higher and higher. electricity song 2015 But, I feel, overall in the long run this deal is good for the group as it gives them access to capital which is critical in this business to scale, maintain and upgrade. Now, PVR is already a leader here and is all set to become an even more dominant player in the next two years in Tamilnadu.

We already had the anchor in the form of Mayajaal and the idea was to create a mini township where people can walk to the movies and just as easily walk to the shopping complex, games, beach, etc. So the villa project came up as ECR is associated with high-end living and a plush lifestyle. We initially visualised weekend homes but now with the city rapidly expanding and large-scale infrastructure development happening in ECR, most of the homes are being used as primary homes! All the villas are Green Buildings with huge natural light flowing through.

Villas are contemporarily styled with toughened glass and SS Railings. electricity off peak hours Fancy pergolas and glass roofs with ample living space. There are double height cut-open living rooms which give depth and character to the villa. Italian marble floors, fancy washrooms fitted with Duravit & Grohe fittings, covered car parks, automated lights, internet of things enabled appliances, VRV air conditioning, solar water heaters, Klipsch home theatre system and huge landscaped areas surrounding the villas – these are just a few salient features of the villas.

With such a big goal ahead of us, I am very thankful that my parents and in-laws were, are and will always be the backbone and support system to reliably fall back on. My wife, Anita, is the very reason for my being where I am today as she is mentally very strong and has been very understanding and supportive all these years of my entrepreneurial journey as it’s not easy to put up with a workaholic husband in the Indian business environment. But now I have learnt to strike a nice work-life balance. We have two sons who are our dear darlings – Adwai and Aadharv – they are a handful and total fun! Maldives is like our home away from home! Paradise on earth! I am very much the secluded beach resort getaway kind of person, who loves water sports – believe it or not the first speeding ticket I got was on a Jet Ski in Lake Tahoe in the US!