Baupost Group Has Trimmed Its Stake in Amc Entmt Hldgs (AMC) as Market Value Declined …

Highvista Strategies Llc increased its stake in Mobile Telesystems Pjsc (MBT) by 325.32% based on its latest 2018Q3 regulatory filing with the SEC.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) Logo

Highvista Strategies Llc increased its stake in Mobile Telesystems Pjsc (MBT) by 325.32% based on its latest 2018Q3 regulatory filing with the SEC. Highvista Strategies Llc bought 50,100 shares as the company’s stock declined 5.99% with the market. The hedge fund held 65,500 shares of the telecommunications equipment company at the end of 2018Q3, valued at $559,000, up from 15,400 at the end of the previous reported quarter. Highvista Strategies Llc who had been investing in Mobile Telesystems Pjsc for a number of months, seems to be bullish on the $7.37B market cap company. It closed at $7.98 lastly. It is up 22.71% since January 12, 2018 and is downtrending. It has underperformed by 22.71% the S&P500. Some Historical MBT News: 20/03/2018 – MTS MBT.N : VTB CAPITAL LOWERS TO HOLD FROM BUY FOR DRS; 27/03/2018 – Report: Exploring Fundamental Drivers Behind Mobile TeleSystems OJSC, Scorpio Tankers, Magellan Midstream Partners, National St; 15/05/2018 – EQS-News: Mobile TeleSystems PJSC: MTS Placed Bonds Using Blockchain Technology; 23/05/2018 – MOBILE TELESYSTEMS 1Q NET 15.4B RUBLES; 19/03/2018 – MOBILE TELESYSTEMS SEES 2018 DIVS AT ABOUT 52B RUBLES; 19/03/2018 – Russia’s MTS expects slight revenue growth in 2018; 07/03/2018 – MOBILE TELESYSTEMS STAKE IN OZON.RU TO INCREASE TO 13.7%; 19/03/2018 – MOBILE TELESYSTEMS 4Q REV. 117B RUBLES, EST. 115B; 19/04/2018 – EQS-News: Mobile TeleSystems PJSC: MTS and MEDSI launch a platform for mobile telemedicine services; 23/05/2018 – MOBILE TELESYSTEMS 1Q ADJ OIBDA 52.1B RUBLES

Baupost Group Llc decreased its stake in Amc Entmt Hldgs Inc (AMC) by 45.37% based on its latest 2018Q3 regulatory filing with the SEC. Baupost Group Llc sold 2.27M shares as the company’s stock declined 22.52% with the market. The hedge fund held 2.73M shares of the consumer services company at the end of 2018Q3, valued at $55.99M, down from 5.00 million at the end of the previous reported quarter. Baupost Group Llc who had been investing in Amc Entmt Hldgs Inc for a number of months, seems to be less bullish one the $1.45 billion market cap company. The stock increased 2.18% or $0.3 during the last trading session, reaching $14.03. About 578,621 shares traded. AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) has risen 7.45% since January 12, 2018 and is uptrending. It has outperformed by 7.45% the S&P500. Some Historical AMC News: 04/04/2018 – AMC Entertainment Received First Cinema License to Open and Operate Cinemas in Saudi Arabia; 25/04/2018 – MEDIA-India’s IDFC in talks to sell AMC, broking units – Economic Times; 19/03/2018 – AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. Board Elects Wanda Film Group President John Zeng as AMC Board of Directors Chairman Reflectin; 05/04/2018 – AMC to open first commercial cinema in Saudi Arabia in 35 years; 17/05/2018 – AMC Entertainment Presenting at Conference May 23; 25/05/2018 – IDBI BANK APPROVES PLAN TO DIVEST PART STAKE IN AMC UNIT; 16/04/2018 – HDFC SAYS AMC UNIT’S FY18 PROFIT AT INR7.22B VS INR5.5B Y/Y; 07/05/2018 – AMC CEO: NOT CONCERNED THAT EUROPE HAD A SOFT QUARTER; 04/04/2018 – Off-Broadway Smash-Hit ‘Puffs’ Brings a Hilarious Take on the Wizarding World to Moviegoers Nationwide May 9 and 12 Only; 03/05/2018 – AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. Announces Quarterly Dividend of $0.20 Per Share

Among 10 analysts covering Mobile TeleSystems (NYSE:MBT), 5 have Buy rating, 0 Sell and 5 Hold. Therefore 50% are positive. Mobile TeleSystems had 20 analyst reports since August 19, 2015 according to SRatingsIntel. The rating was upgraded by J.P. Morgan on Wednesday, July 26 to “Buy”. The stock of Public Joint-Stock Company Mobile TeleSystems (NYSE:MBT) earned “Equal Weight” rating by Morgan Stanley on Friday, May 5. The firm has “Buy” rating given on Wednesday, August 19 by Citigroup. On Wednesday, July 26 the stock rating was upgraded by JP Morgan to “Overweight”. The firm has “Overweight” rating given on Monday, January 22 by Morgan Stanley. Citigroup upgraded the shares of MBT in report on Monday, November 21 to “Buy” rating. The company was upgraded on Friday, October 21 by Raiffeisen Centrobank. The rating was initiated by Credit Suisse with “Outperform” on Monday, June 20. Standpoint Research downgraded the shares of MBT in report on Friday, April 7 to “Hold” rating. Deutsche Bank downgraded it to “Hold” rating and $10.6 target in Wednesday, December 6 report.

Highvista Strategies Llc, which manages about $3.88B and $214.42M US Long portfolio, decreased its stake in Transdigm Group Inc (NYSE:TDG) by 2,300 shares to 12,730 shares, valued at $4.74M in 2018Q3, according to the filing. It also reduced its holding in Amphenol Corp New (NYSE:APH) by 3,200 shares in the quarter, leaving it with 5,600 shares, and cut its stake in Dxc Technology Co.

Baupost Group Llc, which manages about $29.88B and $13.06 billion US Long portfolio, upped its stake in Tesla Inc (Prn) by 50.00 million shares to 300.00M shares, valued at $308.55 million in 2018Q3, according to the filing. It also increased its holding in Mckesson Corp (NYSE:MCK) by 548,000 shares in the quarter, for a total of 2.18M shares, and has risen its stake in Tribune Media Co.

Investors sentiment increased to 1.12 in Q3 2018. Its up 0.10, from 1.02 in 2018Q2. It improved, as 25 investors sold AMC shares while 42 reduced holdings. 35 funds opened positions while 40 raised stakes. 44.89 million shares or 3.50% less from 46.52 million shares in 2018Q2 were reported. Brookfield Asset Management stated it has 123,500 shares. Jpmorgan Chase And Co accumulated 111,925 shares or 0% of the stock. The Connecticut-based Cubist Systematic Strategies Ltd has invested 0.02% in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC). Lapides Asset Mgmt Ltd Limited Liability Company has invested 2.58% of its portfolio in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC). 527,223 are held by Schwab Charles Investment Mgmt Inc. Vanguard Group Inc has invested 0% in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC). Millennium Mgmt Lc, a New York-based fund reported 260,017 shares. State Street Corp has invested 0% in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC). 225,521 were reported by Gotham Asset Management Lc. 1.05M were accumulated by Renaissance Technologies Limited Liability. Royal Bancshares Of Canada stated it has 21,114 shares or 0% of all its holdings. Morgan Stanley holds 0% or 626,017 shares. Moreover, Hsbc Hldg Public Limited Com has 0% invested in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC). Dimensional Fund Advsrs LP owns 1.88M shares. Lpl Fin Ltd Llc has invested 0% in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC).

Among 18 analysts covering AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC), 11 have Buy rating, 1 Sell and 6 Hold. Therefore 61% are positive. AMC Entertainment had 74 analyst reports since July 22, 2015 according to SRatingsIntel. M Partners upgraded the shares of AMC in report on Wednesday, July 22 to “Buy” rating. On Thursday, April 26 the stock rating was maintained by FBR Capital with “Buy”. The rating was upgraded by Wedbush on Thursday, June 21 to “Buy”. The stock of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) earned “Buy” rating by Wedbush on Wednesday, May 2. The firm has “Neutral” rating by B. Riley & Co given on Wednesday, March 30. The firm has “Outperform” rating by Credit Suisse given on Tuesday, March 15. The rating was maintained by FBR Capital with “Outperform” on Tuesday, May 9. The rating was initiated by Loop Capital on Wednesday, August 24 with “Buy”. M Partners downgraded AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) rating on Friday, September 14. M Partners has “Neutral” rating and $21 target. On Tuesday, November 7 the stock rating was maintained by Wedbush with “Buy”.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) Ratings Chart

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Alibaba-backed AI startup Megvii said to be weighing IPO this year

The Beijing-based firm, backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, joins rival … CCB International Holdings Ltd, Qiming Venture Partners and Sinovation …

Hong Kong

MEGVII, the owner of facial recognition developer Face++, is considering an initial public offering in Hong Kong that could net as much as US$1 billion, people familiar with the matter said.

Megvii is weighing an IPO to raise between US$500 million and US$1 billion with Hong Kong as a destination, the people said, requesting not to be named because the matter is private. Deliberations are at an early stage and no final decision has been made as the details of the plans could still change, the people said.

The Beijing-based firm, backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, joins rival artificial intelligence outfits raising funds to help fulfil the country’s ambition of leading the field by 2030.

sentifi.com

Market voices on:

Megvii is competing with the world’s largest AI startup SenseTime Group Ltd – also backed by Alibaba – as the two provide facial recognition technology to financial, retail, mobile and government clients. SenseTime itself is said to be in discussions to raise about US$2 billion.

“We have no specific IPO plans,” Xie Yinan, a spokesman for Megvii, said in a statement.

Megvii provides face-scanning systems to companies including Lenovo Group Ltd and Ant Financial, the payments company that underpins Alibaba’s e-commerce platforms.

Beyond commerce, facial recognition technology has attracted interest from government authorities who want to be able to detect crimes and threats to social stability before they take place.

Megvii’s software uses facial scans held in a Ministry of Public Security database drawn from identification files on about 1.4 billion Chinese.

The startup’s investors include Boyu Capital, Ant Financial, SK Group, and the Russia-China Investment Fund, a venture backed by sovereign wealth funds of the two nations. Other backers include Foxconn Technology Group, CCB International Holdings Ltd, Qiming Venture Partners and Sinovation Ventures.

It was said to be raising a US$500 million round in December at a valuation of up to US$4 billion, people familiar with the matter said at the time.

Ant Financial is formally known as Zhejiang Ant Small & Micro Financial Services Group. BLOOMBERG

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Investment Management Of Virginia Has Raised Its Amc Entertainment Holdings In (AMC) Holding …

Investment Management Of Virginia Llc increased Amc Entertainment …. “As AMC Stomps MoviePass, How Will Regal Entertainment Respond?

BankUnited, Inc. (NYSE:BKU) Logo

Investment Management Of Virginia Llc increased Amc Entertainment Holdings In (AMC) stake by 42.19% reported in 2018Q2 SEC filing. Investment Management Of Virginia Llc acquired 21,367 shares as Amc Entertainment Holdings In (AMC)’s stock rose 29.77%. The Investment Management Of Virginia Llc holds 72,012 shares with $1.15 million value, up from 50,645 last quarter. Amc Entertainment Holdings In now has $1.42B valuation. The stock decreased 1.29% or $0.18 during the last trading session, reaching $13.76. About 304,764 shares traded. AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) has risen 41.20% since November 23, 2017 and is uptrending. It has outperformed by 25.58% the S&P500. Some Historical AMC News: 07/05/2018 – AMC Entertainment 1Q Admissions Revenue $875M; 22/05/2018 – Lot18 & AMC Launch Sales for New Female-Inspired “The Walking Dead” Wine Collection; 20/04/2018 – DJ AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc Cl, Inst Holders, 1Q 2018 (AMC); 25/04/2018 – GKIDS and Fathom Events Team Up to Bring Five New Animated Titles to U.S. Cinemas in 2018; 24/05/2018 – AMC Theatres CEO says company is “roaring hot,” with more cinemas and blockbuster hits to come; 19/03/2018 – AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. Board Elects Wanda Film Group President John Zeng as AMC Board of Directors Chairman Reflectin; 05/04/2018 – MoviePass works at all AMC theaters again after some were removed in January – and subscribers are thrilled; 08/03/2018 – Malachite Management Achieves AMC Institute Accreditation; 06/03/2018 – DEADLINE ALERT – Bronstein, Gewirtz & Grossman, LLC Reminds Investors of Class Action Against AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC) & Lead Plaintiff Deadline: March 13, 2018; 21/05/2018 – Get in the Ring With Wrestling Documentary ‘350 Days’ Starring Pro Legends Bret Hart and ‘Superstar’ Billy Graham in U.S. Cinemas July 12 Only

Bankunited Inc (NYSE:BKU) had an increase of 8.49% in short interest. BKU’s SI was 3.03M shares in November as released by FINRA. Its up 8.49% from 2.79M shares previously. With 1.05 million avg volume, 3 days are for Bankunited Inc (NYSE:BKU)’s short sellers to cover BKU’s short positions. The SI to Bankunited Inc’s float is 2.9%. The stock increased 1.52% or $0.5 during the last trading session, reaching $33.46. About 146,149 shares traded. BankUnited, Inc. (NYSE:BKU) has risen 15.65% since November 23, 2017 and is uptrending. It has outperformed by 0.03% the S&P500. Some Historical BKU News: 25/04/2018 – BankUnited 1Q Net Interest Income Increased by $17.2M to $247.8M; 25/04/2018 – BANKUNITED INC – NET INTEREST INCOME INCREASED BY $17.2 MLN TO $247.8 MLN FOR QUARTER ENDED MARCH 31, 2018 FROM MARCH 31, 2017; 25/04/2018 – BankUnited 1Q Net $85.2M; 25/04/2018 – BankUnited 1Q EPS 77c; 25/04/2018 – BANKUNITED 1Q EPS 77C, EST. 72C; 14/05/2018 – Epoch Investment Partners, Inc. Exits Position in BankUnited; 20/04/2018 – DJ BankUnited Inc, Inst Holders, 1Q 2018 (BKU); 23/03/2018 BankUnited, Inc. Announces Quarterly Dividend

Among 5 analysts covering AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC), 4 have Buy rating, 0 Sell and 1 Hold. Therefore 80% are positive. AMC Entertainment had 5 analyst reports since June 19, 2018 according to SRatingsIntel. On Thursday, June 21 the stock rating was upgraded by Benchmark to “Buy”. The stock of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) has “Buy” rating given on Tuesday, June 19 by FBR Capital. Wedbush upgraded the shares of AMC in report on Thursday, June 21 to “Buy” rating. The company was downgraded on Friday, September 14 by M Partners.

Investors sentiment increased to 1.02 in 2018 Q2. Its up 0.21, from 0.81 in 2018Q1. It increased, as 21 investors sold AMC shares while 45 reduced holdings. 30 funds opened positions while 37 raised stakes. 46.52 million shares or 2.62% less from 47.77 million shares in 2018Q1 were reported. Zurcher Kantonalbank (Zurich Cantonalbank) has invested 0% in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC). Millennium Mngmt Lc holds 0.02% in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) or 791,950 shares. Wellington Group Ltd Liability Partnership holds 67,092 shares or 0% of its portfolio. Manufacturers Life Ins Com The owns 40,355 shares. Fmr Ltd Co has 0% invested in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) for 131,769 shares. Pinnacle Limited holds 91,166 shares or 0.03% of its portfolio. Pub Employees Retirement Sys Of Ohio owns 120,137 shares for 0.01% of their portfolio. 14,673 were reported by Old Natl Savings Bank In. Bank Of Montreal Can has 9,006 shares. Moreover, Axa has 0% invested in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) for 24,200 shares. National Bank Of America De reported 157,425 shares. Northern Trust accumulated 0% or 625,166 shares. Suntrust Banks Inc has 0.01% invested in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC). Cim Inv Mangement holds 0.11% in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) or 20,839 shares. Kings Point Capital Mngmt reported 0% stake.

Investment Management Of Virginia Llc decreased Hudson Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ:HDSN) stake by 233,016 shares to 225,973 valued at $454,000 in 2018Q2. It also reduced Luminex Corp. (NASDAQ:LMNX) stake by 57,600 shares and now owns 925,150 shares. Mosaic Co. (NYSE:MOS) was reduced too.

More notable recent AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) news were published by: Seekingalpha.com which released: “BAML still cautious on AMC Entertainment” on November 12, 2018, also Fool.com with their article: “Is AMC Entertainment a Buy After Its Recent Sell-Off?” published on November 15, 2018, Fool.com published: “Will AMC’s Run Continue When It Reports Earnings?” on November 07, 2018. More interesting news about AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) were released by: Fool.com and their article: “As AMC Stomps MoviePass, How Will Regal Entertainment Respond?” published on November 18, 2018 as well as Bizjournals.com‘s news article titled: “Charlotte theater adds enhanced Dolby Cinema experience” with publication date: November 20, 2018.

Among 3 analysts covering BankUnited (NYSE:BKU), 2 have Buy rating, 0 Sell and 1 Hold. Therefore 67% are positive. BankUnited had 5 analyst reports since July 31, 2018 according to SRatingsIntel. On Tuesday, September 18 the stock rating was downgraded by Morgan Stanley to “Equal-Weight”. On Tuesday, July 31 the stock rating was maintained by Morgan Stanley with “Overweight”. BMO Capital Markets maintained it with “Outperform” rating and $40 target in Monday, November 5 report. The stock of BankUnited, Inc. (NYSE:BKU) has “Overweight” rating given on Wednesday, October 3 by Barclays Capital. The company was maintained on Thursday, October 25 by BMO Capital Markets.

BankUnited, Inc. operates as the bank holding firm for BankUnited, National Association that provides a range of banking services to small and medium sized businesses, and individual and corporate clients in the United States. The company has market cap of $3.45 billion. The firm offers deposit products, including checking accounts, money market deposit accounts, savings accounts, and certificates of deposit. It has a 5.31 P/E ratio. The Company’s loans portfolio includes small business loans, commercial real estate loans, equipment loans and leases, term loans, formula loans, municipal and non-profit loans and leases, commercial and mortgage warehouse lines of credit, letters of credit, and consumer loans, as well as residential loans.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) Ratings Chart

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77 Large Investors Shied Away From AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC)

The third largest holder is Vanguard Group Inc, which currently holds $82.22 million worth of this stock and that ownership represents nearly 4.26% of …

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) produced a 83.51% rally since recording the worst price of $10.02. Thanks to the latest -0.22% decrease, it now trades at $18.38. Throughout the trading on 11/07/2018, the share price floated between $18.395 and $19.21. This company shares are 15.83% off its target price of $21.29 and the current market capitalization stands at $1.93B. The recent change has given its price a -3.49% deficit over SMA 50 and -11.21% deficit over its 52-week high. The stock witnessed -6.27% declines, 17.27% gains and 20.48% gains for the 1-month, 3-month and 6-month period, respectively. To measure price-variation, we found AMC’s volatility during a week at 3.72% and during a month it has been found around 3.98%.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC) Top Holders

Institutional investors currently hold around $1.01 billion or 0% in AMC stock. Look at its top three institutional owners. Baupost Group Llc/Ma owns $92.1 million in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc., which represents roughly 4.77% of the company’s market cap and approximately 9.09% of the institutional ownership. Similar statistics are true for the second largest owner, Janus Henderson Group Plc, which owns 4,808,385 shares of the stock are valued at $88.57 million. The third largest holder is Vanguard Group Inc, which currently holds $82.22 million worth of this stock and that ownership represents nearly 4.26% of its market capitalization.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. 13F Filings

At the end of June reporting period, 91 institutional holders increased their position in AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) by some 6,066,834 shares, 77 decreased positions by 8,044,151 and 28 held positions by 40,907,203. That puts total institutional holdings at 55,018,188 shares, according to SEC filings. The stock grabbed 41 new institutional investments totaling 2,629,497 shares while 22 institutional investors sold out their entire positions totaling 3,912,550 shares.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC) Insider Trades

Multiple company employees have indulged in significant insider trading. AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. disclosed in a document filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that EVP, US OPERATIONS Mcdonald John D has sold 7,500 shares of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC) in trading session dated Oct. 15, 2018. These shares are worth $140,250 and were traded at $18.7 each. The SEC filing shows that Mcdonald John D performed a sale of 17,500 shares. The EVP, US OPERATIONS disposed these shares by way of transaction on Oct. 15, 2018. The company’s shares were given away at $18.7 per share worth to an income of some $327,250 on account of Mcdonald John D.

Director, 10% Owner, Wanda America Investment Holdi, sold 75,826,927 common shares of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC) in the open market. In a transaction dated Sep. 07, 2018, the shares were put up for sale at an average price of $1.82, raking in a sum of $138,005,007. After this sale, common shares of AMC are directly owned by the insider, with total stake valued at $.

In the transaction dated Jul. 30, 2018, the great number of shares disposed came courtesy the EVP, US OPERATIONS; Mcdonald John D disposed a total of 17,500 shares at an average price of $15.42, amounting to approximately $269,850. The insider now directly owns 56,961 shares worth $1,046,943.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC) Analyst Guide

Several analysts have released their opinion on AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AMC), with 3 analysts believing it is a strong buy. Whereas 7 of them predict the stock is a hold. Also, there are 4 buy, 0 sell and 0 strong sell ratings, collectively assigning a 2.29 average brokerage recommendation.

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Changing Landscape: The global economy impacts M&A activity in film exhibition

Following a similar path to growth, U.K. operator Cineworld acquired Regal Entertainment, making it one of the industry’s largest companies.

The past several years have seen unprecedented changes in the business world, with much of that spawned from technological advances and the growing dynamics of social media. Each country’s economic outlook is becoming more and more intertwined with the rest of the world. This has resulted in companies seeking an increased global reach.

This outlook has transformed many industries, including film exhibition. The industry that was once dominated by the Hollywood studios and the North American box office has now entered a new era. International box office is growing at a record pace, with 2017 at $29 billion, up from $24 billion five years earlier in 2012. This is over two and a half times North American box office of $11 billion, only modestly up from $10.8 billion in 2012. The number of international screens has also grown, primarily fueled by China, which increased its screens in the past ten years from about 5,000 to almost 49,000. This surpassed the total of the North American market, which has about 43,000.

The film exhibition industry has found it necessary to transform itself with the digital age. Almost all screens in North America and worldwide are now digital. The advent of digital projection has reduced the costs associated with movie delivery, while also providing for benefits such as 3D movies, increased alternative content, more dynamic sound, motion seating, laser projection, and more efficient auditorium usage. However, the digital age has also provided increased theatre competition from movie-streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and others. This has forced film exhibitors to be innovative with enhanced services and amenities such as luxury recliner seating, enhanced food options, beer, wine and cocktails, in-theatre dining, and even adding attractions such as bowling and laser tag.

All of the above has culminated in much consolidation within the film exhibition sector in the past few years, resulting in an increase in theatre values. Certain companies worldwide are seeking to expand their business platforms, while others are electing to sell rather than invest in theatre upgrades.

M&A Activity

The film exhibition sector has recently seen major consolidation globally. Up until recently, most consolidation had been regional, such as various acquisitions in the U.S. or companies such as Odeon and Vue acquiring companies throughout Europe.

This changed dramatically with Dalian Wanda entering the market. In less than three years, it acquired AMC in the U.S. and Hoyts in Australia; subsequently, AMC acquired Carmike, Odeon/UCI and Nordic. Following a similar path to growth, U.K. operator Cineworld acquired Regal Entertainment, making it one of the industry’s largest companies.

Wanda and Cineworld are not alone in the pursuit of establishing an international platform. Others have expanded into North America, such as European exhibitor Kinepolis acquiring Landmark Cinemas in Canada, Mexico’s CMX acquiring Cobb Theatres in the U.S., and Mexico’s Cinepolis acquiring certain U.S. theatres from Bow Tie Cinemas and from Krikorian Premier Theatres.

In the U.S., various exhibitors have grabbed market share by acquiring theatre circuits that are complementary to their existing theatre portfolio.

Motivation of Acquirers

Larger exhibitors are continuously seeking ways to increase shareholder value via growth, whether from building new theatres, upgrading existing theatres, acquisitions, or some combination thereof.

While organic growth or upgrades can result in significant returns on capital over the long term, acquisitions can result in near-term increases in revenue and profitability. Wanda has demonstrated this with its various acquisitions, as it quickly gained market share in countries where it previously had little or no presence. More recently, Wanda has curtailed its growth due to the cash constraints associated with growing so quickly.

Larger exhibitors with an established corporate infrastructure have an advantage, as they can acquire theatres based upon a multiple of theatre level cash flow without absorbing duplicative corporate overhead.

Acquisitions can also take place when exhibitors want to venture into new theatre platforms. This was demonstrated when Southern Theatres acquired Movie Tavern to delve into the increasing popularity of in-theatre dining.

Motivation of Sellers

The motivation of sellers varies greatly depending on the outlook of ownership. Smaller exhibitors may not have easy access to the capital necessary to upgrade and stay competitive in their markets.

Also, owners of theatres that are operated by older generations may not have the inclination to go through an extensive upgrade project, as the payback can be long for investments in luxury seating and other amenities.

Another primary factor is the current market. Traditionally, film exhibition companies have sold in the range of six times the net theatre-level cash flow. The multiple varies depending upon the size of the theatre portfolio, capital expenditure needs, and the economic outlook for the theatres’ markets.

While these factors all still play an important role in acquisition pricing, cash flow multiples for larger circuits are now as high as eight times, and potentially higher for exhibitors with diversified revenue sources such as in-theatre dining. These increases are primarily due to new entrants in the industry paying a premium to gain market share.

On the other hand, many exhibitors are currently focused on deploying capital for their theatre upgrades and so are reluctant to sell until they see the benefits of the upgrades that will in turn increase their overall circuit value.

Real Estate

As exhibitors explore strategic options, those that own their theatres’ real estate have an alternative to selling the business by instead only selling the real estate. This can be accomplished via a sale/leaseback transaction that can provide owners with significant funds but also allow them to continue operating their theatres.

Exhibitors of all sizes have completed sale/leasebacks including large exhibitors such as AMC and Regal, and mid-sized exhibitors such as Georgia Theatre Company, Krikorian Premier Theatres, Muller Family Theatres and many others.

As compared to a mortgage in which banks typically lend 60 to 70% of property value and the funds must be used for the business, a typical sale/leaseback provider will buy the property at full value and the proceeds can be used for ownership dividends, capital expenditures or other needs. Typical lease terms are 15 to 20 years with several extension options. In most cases, the providers of this type of financial instrument require the rent to be about half of the cash flow generated by the theatre to provide a cushion in the event of a downturn in profitability.

There are certain financial companies that have a focus on theatre sale/leasebacks, and more have recently entered the market. All understand the increasing value of theatre properties in good markets.

Conclusion

The global economy and the digital age have brought significant change to many industries, including film exhibition. While the industry has grown, as demonstrated by the increased number of theatres and rising box office, theatre owners have needed to be innovative to compete against streaming services. This has resulted in opportunities for both buyers and sellers in the sector. Many companies feel that acquisitions are the quickest route to gain market share, while others want to sell to take advantage of increasing business values rather than investing capital for upgrades. While this trend may slow down, M&A activity could remain very prevalent during the next several years as both potential buyers and sellers explore an ever-changing business environment.

EFA Partners is a boutique financial advisory firm that provides investment-banking services focused on M&A and arranging capital for entertainment, media and technology companies. Its industry expertise and relationships has allowed it to successfully close well over $1 billion of transactions for companies involved in the film industry ranging from production to distribution to exhibition. EFA has arranged several M&A transactions in the film industry. In addition, it has also arranged numerous financings for industry film clients via its wealth of relationships from which to source capital include local and regional banks, national and international banks, specialty finance groups, equipment financiers, providers of mezzanine debt and private-equity groups.

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