The brand Ster Century Cinemas to be reactivated
By Ing. Juraj Misun, PhD. – Ing. Ivana Misunova Hudakova, PhD.
This fall the Israeli cinema operator Cinema City International rebranded all three Slovak multiplexes AuPark, Eurovea and Polus) from Palace Cinemas into its own brand Cinema City. A small Slovak chain, owned by the local film distributor Tatrafilm, experienced a problem as its miniplexes were similarly named (City Cinemas). To avoid customer irritation, even both companies do not have any theater in the same cities, the brand had to be changed.
To the surprise of many marketing experts, Tatrafilm revived the since 2005 inactive brand Ster Century Cinemas. The miniplexes in Kosice and Zilina will be rebranded soon and two new three-screen theaters in Prievidza (Korzo) and Spisska Nova Ves (Madaras) will have the new brand from its opening later this year.
Ster Century Cinemas was originally a subsidiary of Ster Kinekor (currently the largest cinema operator in South Africa), with operations in Ireland, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, the UK, Spain, Greece and Slovakia.
In 2002 the central European and Greek activities were sold and in 2003 also the Irish, British, Spanish and Slovak ones. In the Slovak Republic the theater Ster Century Polus was co-owned by the Dutch company Ster Century Management BV and Slovak partners FMTA and Metropolis Plus. In the last of them had Tatrafilm a share. The Ster Century Cinemas brand was globally deactivated back in 2005, when the last British and Irish theaters were rebranded to Vue’s identity. A similar brand is still active in Greece, using a similar logo – [Ster Cinemas] (http://www.stercinemas.gr/templates/home.aspx).
According to the local economic magazine Trend, Tatrafilm could have a simplified access to the brand Ster Century. Up to November 7th 2010 the brand was owned by a Slovak company Ster Kinekor Europe Limited, as recorded in the Office of Industrial Property on this date the legal entitlement ceases.