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Cinema Advertising is on Track for $1 Billion

Cinema advertising could be a $1 billion business in a few years, National Association of Theatre Owners president John Fithian said Thursday at the Cinema Advertising Council's second annual Marquee Marketing at the Movies event.

"Patrons are not just comfortable with the preshow, they actually like it," Fithian said at the gathering designed to entertain and rally Madison Avenue a week before it goes through the broadcast networks' annual upfront presentations.

Last year, Fithian said, cinema advertising accounted for $500 million in revenue for theater owners, ranking third behind the core revenue streams of ticket sales and concessions. With total year-to-date revenue for theaters up over last year, advertisers and theater owners are optimistic that the medium's growth momentum will continue.

Ironically, when viewed from a theatre owner profit margin perspective, the sequence is very different -- concessions are most profitable, followed by advertising and lastly movie ticket sales.

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