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Exhibiting distress

Brit plexes multiplying faster than revs, report sez

LONDON — The U.K. exhibition industry is teetering on the edge of a financial precipice, according to a report by Dodona Research.

Investment in new multiplexes is outstripping the rise in revenues, claimed Dodona, which specializes in analyzing exhib trends worldwide.

The report warned that some of the U.K.’s leading exhibitors could fall into the red by 2002. “There is now near universal consent that the long-awaited meltdown of the U.K. exhibition market has arrived,” the researchers declared.

Following the Yanks

Company argued British cinema owners are in the same position in which their American counterparts found themselves three years ago, just before the U.S. exhib sector lurched into financial crisis.

Dodona predicted U.K. admissions, which have been rising for more than a decade, will continue to grow for at least the next five years. But the number of new theaters is set to grow even faster, with 376 screens scheduled to open this year and an additional 219 in 2002.

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