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AMC Entertainment Discusses Acquisition Cineworld Theaters

 |  December 21, 2022

AMC Entertainment discussed a potential acquisition of Cineworld assets with some of that firm’s lenders.

The discussions centered on certain theater assets in the United States and Europe owned by bankrupt Cineworld, but have ended without an agreement, AMC Entertainment said in a Wednesday (Dec. 21) filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

“A definitive agreement with the lenders has not been reached regarding the terms of any proposal to be presented to the debtors in the Cineworld cases, and at this time negotiations are not continuing,” the filing said.

The firm added in the filing that while it reserves the right to continue to explore such an acquisition, there is no assurance that the discussions could continue or that an agreement could be reached.

Related: UK: Cineworld’s buyout may yield unhappy ending

Cineworld — which operates 747 theaters in 10 countries including the United States and the United Kingdom — announced in a Sept. 7 press release that it and some of its subsidiaries had commenced Chapter 11 cases in a U.S. bankruptcycourt.

The company said the release that it expected to emerge from Chapter 11 during the first quarter of 2023. In the meantime, Cineworld said it expected to operate its business and cinemas as usual.

“The pandemic was an incredibly difficult time for our business, with the enforced closure of cinemas and huge disruption to film schedules that has led us to this point,” Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidingersaid in the release. “This latest process is part of our ongoing efforts to strengthen our financial position and is in pursuit of a de-leveraging that will create a more resilient capital structure and effective business.”

AMC Entertainment — which has 930 theaters across the globe and is the largest movie theater chain in the United States — emerged from the pandemic optimistic about the rapid rebound of the film industry.

“Our focus is no longer on survival, but now has turned instead to directing a surge in moviegoing and on the recovery of AMC, objectives that feel to us like they are right around the corner,” AMC Entertainment CEO Adam Aron said in a March 2021 earnings call as the pandemic restrictions were winding down.