BookEazy, Pune based online movie ticketing service has shut shop and the founders will now focus on Lipikaar, the language transliteration startup.
‘There has been a significant shift in the way Multiplexes view their customer-facing partners, starting with discomfort to a full-blown lack of faith. They now see ticket-booking as a premium service and have enforced policies to tilt the economics away from aggregators towards the owner of the inventory.

This is where BookEazy is unable to fit in – the genesis of our concept being the same ticket price to the movie-goer, independent of the purchase channel. It has become necessary for BookEazy to go in to hibernation and seriously look at a ground up change in how it works.’ – blog

Well, given bookmyshow’s (and other deep pocketed players) aggressive marketing and partnerships with multiplexes, independent vendors will have a tough time forging deals with theatre owners.

Business Model

BookEazy launched ‘pay-at-the-multiplex” service in 2006 and served as an aggregator. Lets look at their business model:

  • Subscription Fee (upfront) of  Rs. 595/ as deposit fee (unlike their competitors) – to check on abuse.
  • Revenue model – They used to charge multiplexes Rs 100/- for every 16 tickets (and Rs 200/- for every 36 tickets) – Once you book the tickets, BookEazy will send you a mobile coupon that you need to show @ the theatre (to buy the ticket).
  • No transaction at the site – this is where you lose all your bargaining power, if you are just another channel for tickets (replacement to standing in queue?).
    Moreover, if they had enabled transaction on the site, they would have easily moved away from charging deposit fee and gained a lot more users.
  • Value of the service to the users? Very low, if I can say this. Compare the service with a self-service bookmyshow and you will know what I am talking about.
  • Smart Competition – right from offline services (you call them and they deliver ticket at your doorstep) to self-service websites (complete the entire transaction), booking tickets is a vendor-agnostic and one is ready to pay a premium for the extra service (like delivery).

Block deals/Owning inventory is the key in the ticket booking business and that’s where BookEazy, in my opinion failed.

What’s your take? Did you use their service (and later moved to some other providers?)? We would love to know your experience.

All one can say is that it’s damn easy to point out mistakes, once the sprint is over – difficult to point out the mistakes, when one is running.

We wish the team all the best for their second venture, Lipikaar.

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