UPDATED with closing stock price. Imax Corp. beat Wall Street’s third-quarter expectations, but investors did not immediately seem impressed, sending the company’s already slumping shares down more than 6% despite a broad rally that boosted most media shares.
Over the past month, the stock has sagged nearly 25% and it flirted with a 52-week low today, finishing at $19.71.
Adjusted earnings of 14 cents a share beat the analyst consensus of 10 cents. Revenue of $82.1 million also exceeded estimates, but dropped 17% from the year-earlier quarter.
China was a bright spot, with box office in the territory zooming 30.5%. But the company’s network business saw revenue dip to $36.7 million from $42.6 million a year ago, while theatrical revenue declined to $40.7 million from $43.5 million.
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In an interview with Deadline, CEO Rich Gelfond acknowledged the challenge of operating in today’s consumer environment, in which theatrical moviegoing is constantly facing new competition for consumers’ leisure time. The company’s large-format technology offers a chance to lean into those challenges, he said.
The hiring this month of longtime studio veteran Megan Colligan as president and EVP will enhance the company’s talent relationships and position it to make the case to investors that it is not the Imax of yesteryear. “Investors mistake us for a North American exhibitor,” Gelfond said. “First of all, 70% of our revenue comes from outside North America and second, we are a technology company.”
In the earnings release, Gelfond noted that “the convergence of streaming and traditional media platforms creates interesting opportunities for Imax.” Expanding on that point, he told Deadline that Netflix’s streaming ambitions (specifically around films like The Irishman, Roma and Six Underground) as well as those of rivals are altering the fundamentals of the movie business.
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