Chinese company buys AMC theater chain
The $2.6 billion deal will make Wanda the largest worldwide movie operator.
AMC Entertainment Holdings, which had filed plans for an IPO, will instead be sold to the Dalian Wanda Group out of China for $2.6 billion. What a relief for the private equity owners who wanted to unload AMC after buying the chain in 2004.
The Dalian Wanda Group, more informally known as Wanda, will now create the world's biggest movie theater operator after absorbing AMC and its 346 cinemas in North America. Wanda wants to continue to expand AMC, and said it will invest some $500 million into AMC's development in the future.
It looks like Wanda will allow AMC to run fairly independently. It will keep AMC's management and headquarters in Kansas City, and didn't initially announce any layoff plans, according to the Associated Press.
AMC had been the No. 2 movie theater operator in the U.S., with $2.5 billion in sales last year compared with the $2.7 billion for Regal Entertainment Group (RGC).
This was a nice sale for AMC's owners, which include Bain Capital and several other private equity companies. AMC has a ton of debt, and has had difficulty paying that off. The company hasn't made a profit in the recent past, but this past year its financials improved on strong ticket sales.
Apollo Global Management (APO) and a unit of JPMorgan Chase (JPM) bought AMC in 2004 for $2 billion, including debt, Bloomberg reported. The next year, AMC merged with Loews Cineplex Entertainment, which was owned by three other private equity firms.
All of those private equity owners wanted to get some money back. They tried to spin out AMC into an IPO in 2008, but withdrew. They filed again for an IPO in 2010, but shelved those plans as talks with Wanda expanded.
Before the AMC deal, the largest Chinese takeover of an American company had been Lenovo Group's $1.8 billion buyout of IBM's PC business in 2005, Bloomberg reported.
The jury is still out on this. But, if we can get the fu**ing politicians out of the way and unleash the energy industry in this country, we could be completely free of non north American energy supplies in 5 years of less. That fact, along with our huge reserves of natural gas means that manufacturing costs would be in line or nearly as cheap as doing it in Asia (factor in shipping costs, etc.). that means a lot of jobs start coming home to America and Canada. Not all of them, mind you. But, a good share will and more will stay here.
China has a tiger by the tale and it won't be easy to deal with their internal problems that no one ever hears about.
Alas, I fear the pols will figure out some way to keep this from happening. Especially, Obama and his shills who are trying very hard to destroy America.
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The solid report comes a month after the retailer closed all of its Canadian operations.
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