AMC picks up theaters

Exhibitor set to purchase most of Kerasotes circuit

AMC Entertainment is set to acquire nearly all Kerasotes Showplace Theaters in a move that will grow AMC’s stable by roughly 970 screens in 93 theaters, mostly in the Midwest. Pricetag wasn’t disclosed.

Kerasotes is the country’s sixth-largest circuit. Privately held exhib is owned by the Kerasotes family and Providence Equity Partners. It was founded in 1909 by Gus Kerasotes, a Greek immigrant.

Deal wasn’t a surprise to Hollywood, since Kerasotes’ private equity partners had made it known they wanted out of the business.

Tony and Dean Kerasotes will retain ownership of their two new Icon concept theaters in Minneapolis and Chicago, as well as a Showplace theater in Secaucus, N.J.

AMC chief exec-prexy Gerry Lopez extolled the complementary geographic footprints of the two exhibs.

Tony Kerasotes, CEO of the Chicago-based company, said Providence’s partnership over the past six years was invaluable in helping to grow the circuit.

Completion of the acquisition is subject to closing conditions and Justice Dept. antitrust approval.

Kansas City-based AMC is the second-largest exhib in North America after Regal Entertainment, operating 4,574 screens in five countries.

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