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AMC back in black

Exhib reports $5.6 mil profit in 2nd quarter

HOLLYWOOD — Exhib AMC Entertainment returned to the black with a $5.6 million profit for its fiscal second quarter as boosted cost controls offset a 3% downturn in revenue.

The Kansas City, Mo.-based circuit reported a $2.8 million loss in the same period a year earlier.

After accounting for the payment of dividends to preferred shareholders, AMC saw a net loss for common shares of $4.1 million. That compared with $8 million in red ink for common shares a year ago.

Revenue dipped to $438.2 million in the 13-week period ended Oct. 2.

Pics deliver

Movies performed solidly in the latest quarter, chairman-CEO Peter Brown said in a conference call with press and analysts. Cost efficiencies implemented in the wake of AMC’s acquisition of General Cinemas are driving bottom-line improvements.

“Effective cost controls were a defining characteristic of the quarter,” Brown said. “We are excited about upcoming film product and look forward to a very strong holiday season.”

AMC enjoyed lower film rentals, and reduced operating costs through payroll trimming and the elimination of older screens. AMC operates 232 theaters with 3,497 screens in the U.S., Canada and seven other countries.

Potential pickups

Currently the second-biggest U.S. exhib after Regal Entertainment, AMC remains interested in selected, occasional acquisition of additional screens, Brown said.

Regal last week posted a 22% increase in third-quarter profit to $44.2 million on higher ticket prices and boosted cinema ad income (Daily Variety, Oct. 22).

AMC shares closed unchanged at $13.75 on Wednesday. Regal shares closed up 40¢, 2.01%, at $20.30.

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