Canada's largest movie theatre chain sold to UK-based company

 

Cineplex Inc. has agreed to sell its shares and outstanding debt to international movie theatre company, Cineworld in a $2.8 billion deal.

“Since Cineplex went public in 2003, we have been committed to delivering value to our shareholders. We believe this transaction today is both financially compelling and in our shareholders best interest,” said Ellis Jacob, President and CEO, Cineplex. “Cineworld Group shares our passion for entertainment and mirrors our commitment to delivering exceptional guest experiences through state-of-the-art technology.”

“The entertainment industry continues to transform and we are pleased that through this agreement we are ensuring Cineplex is part of the next era of global entertainment.”

Cineworld, which is based in Brentford, UK, has grown through expansion and by acquisition to become the second-largest cinema chain worldwide, holding the number one or number two position by number of screens in each of its regions. As of Dec 2019, Cineworld operated 9,498 screens across 786 sites in the US, UK, Ireland, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, and Israel.

Toronto-based Cineplex, meanwhile, 165 movie theatres across Canada.

Cineplex has seven weeks to solicit and negotiate with other potential buyers who may be willing to pay more for the company. Otherwise, the companies expect the transaction to close in the first half of 2020.

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