Thai cinema operator Major Cineplex is set to become the country's dominant exhibitor after announcing plans to float shares on the stock exchange of Thailand (SET) in June.

The initial public offering (IPO) of 20m shares at a value of five baht each will be used to fuel the circuit's expansion, announced managing director Vicha Poolvaraluck on Feb 5.

Major Cineplex and Entertain Golden Village (EGV) are currently the leading cinema operators, pulling in approximately 40% of the cinema market each. However EGV, a joint venture between Thailand's Entertain Theatre Network and Singapore's Golden Village controls the largest cinema estate, operating 88 screens compared to Major Cineplex's 51 screens. The Thai cinema market is estimated to be worth $68.5m (Baht 3bn).

With the $2.3m (Baht 100m) capital raised through its IPO, Major Cineplex expects to build five more multiplexes with a total of 54 screens and 15,200 seats. This will bring its chain of cinemas to 11 and increase the company's registered capital to $13.4m (Baht 587m).

EGV, which is not listed on the stock exchange, has no immediate plans to build further complexes in the country.