AMC Entertainment’s quarterly earnings fell short of Wall Street’s expectations, with profits and revenue dragged down by the summer box office slump.
Profits at the country’s second largest exhibitor fell more than 45%, topping off at $24 million, while revenue plunged 7% to $764 million. Diluted earnings per share came in at 24 cents, down from 45 cents in the prior year period.
That missed expectations. Analysts had projected revenue of $773 million on earnings per share of 27 cents.
AMC chief Adam Aron attributed the lackluster results to a weaker crop of summer blockbusters. Flops such as “Alice Through the Looking Glass” and disappointments such as “X-Men: Apocalypse” have pushed industry-wide receipts down nearly 10%. At AMC, second quarter attendance declined 7.1%.
The financial results were announced as AMC has been in acquisition mode. The company has a plan in place to spend $650 million to acquire Odeon & UCI Cinemas Group, Europe’s largest theater chain. After fits and starts, AMC moved closer to buying Carmike Cinemas. The company sweetened its initial offer for the chain to $1.2 billion after threatening to walk away from the negotiating table. The merger will make AMC the country’s largest theater chain, bypassing Regal.
In a statement, AMC CEO Aron described the amount of merger activity as “breathtaking,” predicting it would create greater value for the company’s guests and shareholders.