Britain’s Cineworld Group has announced a proposed deal to acquire the movie theater business of Netherlands-headquartered Cinema City International that values the latter at about £503M ($828M). Cinema City, which trades on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, operates in seven countries across Central and Eastern Europe and Israel. Cineworld is the UK and Ireland’s leading cinema group in terms of box office revenues and also operates theaters under the Picturehouse brand. The tie-up would create the second-biggest exhibition business in Europe with the No. 1 or No. 2 postition by number of screens in each of the regions where it is involved. The combined company would have 201 sites and 1,852 digital screens. Cineworld says Cinema City brings “attractive growth opportunities in developing economies and markets in which multiplex screen penetration is relatively low, with low admissions per capita, high population per screen and low average ticket prices.” Cinema City grew its revenue by 14.2% in the period 2009-2012 and has plans in place for screen openings. The deal, which needs to be approved by shareholders, will see Cineworld chairman Anthony Bloom continue in that role for the enlarged group. Mooky Greidinger, currently CEO of Cinema City, will be CEO of the new entity.
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