Onex enters Germany via Ufa buy

Co. made co-venture with Kieft & Kieft

SYDNEY — Canadian investment group Onex Corp., which owns U.S. exhib Loews Cineplex, has entered the exhib market in Germany by buying 50% of 181 screens formerly owned by the bankrupt Ufa Theater.

Onex has formed a co-venture in Germany with Kieft & Kieft, which operates the Cinestar multiplex circuit. Co-venture bought the vast majority of Ufa’s screens from the receivers for a bargain price of less than $5.2 million.

Onex’s role was confirmed Monday by David Seargeant, managing director of Australia’s Amalgamated Holdings, which owns 50% of Kieft & Kieft.

Deal does not give Onex equity in the 400 Cinestar screens operated by Kieft & Kieft. Ufa sites will be re-branded as Cinestar, making it the largest exhib in Germany.

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