Indian exhibitor PVR Cinemas has acquired a 69.27% stake in rival Cinemax to create India’s largest cinema chain.

PVR acquired the stake from Cinemax founders, the Kanakia family, for $71.7m (Rs3.94bn). The Delhi-based exhibitor will also purchase up to an additional 26% stake in Cinemax from public shareholders through an open offer.

PVR operates 197 screens across India, while Cinemax operates 138 screens in cities including Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Pune.

Indian multiplex operators are currently undergoing a period of consolidation. In June this year, Inox Leisure bought a controlling stake in Fame India, which had also been an acquisition target of Big Cinemas parent, Reliance MediaWorks.