Revs, losses up at AMC

Quarterly figures rose 8% to $446.4

No. 2 U.S. exhib AMC Entertainment on Tuesday posted broadened losses in its fourth quarter and fiscal year despite a surge in revenue for both periods, with international properties swelling red ink.

Kansas City, Mo.-based chain took a $19.6 million impairment charge in a 14-week quarter ended April 3, writing down under-performing theaters in various foreign markets. That led to a final-quarter loss of $24.2 million, widened from $18.4 million in the comparable year-earlier period.

Quarterly revenue rose 8% on a pro forma basis accounting for acquisitions, to $446.4 million.

Over 12 months, red ink swelled to $47.5 million from $40.9 million in the previous fiscal year.

Pro forma annual revenue rose 7% to $1.79 billion.

In a conference call with execs, analysts seemed pleased with operating performance, and AMC shares rose after the financial results were posted. The shares closed up 62¢ at $10.87 on Tuesday.

“Our asset quality and continued execution of our strategic plan … contributed to record results in fiscal 2003,” said chairman-CEO-Peter Brown, who noted cash flow gains in addition to the revenue boosts.

AMC operates 239 theaters with 3,524 screens in the U.S., Canada, France, Hong Kong, Japan, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the U.K.

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