China's Bona Film Group Sees 2014 Earnings Double to $16.9 Million

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The film producer and distributor also announced the launch of a second film fund of $270 million.

Net profits at Bona Film Group rose 99.6 percent to $16.9 million in 2014, while the Chinese film producer and distributor reported a 70 percent increase in net revenues last year to $254.1 million, driven by the strong box office performance of the 12 films it released.

The Nasdaq-listed Bona also announced a second film fund of $270 million (1.7 billion yuan) to finance the development and production of Bona's film and TV projects over the next two to three years, including Chinese language films and foreign language films.

Among the year's highlights was The Taking of Tiger Mountain in December 2014, which generated $140.41 million in domestic box office receipts, making it the highest-ever grossing film distributed by Bona and ranking as one of the top 10 box office performers released in China's film history, including foreign films.

"Our success in 2014 was largely driven by the box office performance of our 12 domestic theatrical releases, which generated approximately 15 percent market share in domestic film box office receipts, making us the second-largest domestic non-state-owned film distributor," said Bona founder, chairman and CEO, Yu Dong.

"We delivered solid financial results and completed several strategic initiatives throughout our key strategy that we expect to further strengthen our position as a leader among non-state-owned film companies in China."

Fourth quarter 2014 net revenues were $52.6 million, an increase of 23 percent compared with $42.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2013.

The 12 films distributed by the group were for domestic theatrical distribution and generated a total of approximately $410 million. This amounts to around 15 percent of total domestic box office receipts, and places Bona as the second-largest market share of non-state owned distributor in China.

Bona also signed a deal with IMAX for three more IMAX screens for three Bona theaters during the year.

In July last year, Bona announced major shake-up of its ownership structure, with investment group Fosun upping its stake in Bona to 20.8 percent, while Yu bought back 21st Century Fox's entire 19.3 percent holding in the company for $71.4 million.

"Bona and Fosun are working together to capture opportunities in the industry with their combined resources," the group said.

By end December, Bona owned and operated 25 theaters with 208 screens, having added three additional theaters in Ningbo Beilun, Zhejiang Wenling, and Shenzhen Longhua in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Major films undergoing production in the first quarter of 2015 include Mekong River, Insanity, Bride Wars, The Sword Master and I am Somebody.