AMC price increases, more theaters, & fewer showtimes on the horizon

Amc price increases

AMC Theatres’ future looked pretty bleak as we remain in the ravages of the global pandemic. When movie theaters began to shutter, it was revealed that AMC was already facing financial woes before COVID-19 became a factor and the pandemic only brought them more to light. Bankruptcy rumors emerged as well as the very idea that the company could be done for good. Despite a series of obstacles and not quite being out of the woods just yet, the company has managed to stay afloat and now AMC Entertainment chairman and CEO Adam Aron is talking about the future of AMC, including price increases and more.

Aron participated in a second-quarter earnings report call that revealed that the company beat revenue expectations and the losses weren’t as bad as anticipated. Also included on the call was talked of “Apes”, AMC’s so-called meme shareholders who propelled the stock’s nearly 1,500 percent rise in 2021. This has been one of many moves that have helped AMC emerge out of the wreckage of the pandemic but more work needs to be done. AMC owed debts pre-Covid and some of them are due to be repaid in 2023 with most needing to be handled by 2026. How will AMC get to the point where this won’t loom over them? Aron offered up some key changes.

One thing that has already started is increased prices. An AMC ticket now averages $10.50 nationwide which is a 50-cent increase. Prices at the concession stands also got bumped up and while most theaters prefer to try to hide price hikes, Aron said it was a necessary move to raise investor confidence.

Also in play is decreasing the number of showtimes in a single day. Rather than run seven days a week, with matinees typically starting at noon or even earlier and the last showing starting around 10:00 PM, the last show at many locations now starts around 8:00 PM Sunday through Thursday. This goes a long way to save on labor and not have a slew of employees working incredibly long hours at their various locations. This is something that could change was moviegoing is even more back to normal but this change feels necessary for where we’re at now.

Perhaps the biggest AMC news lately was that they planned on acquiring shuttered Arclight and Pacific Movie Theatres that closed in the wake of the pandemic. For a brand that was nearly broke, the idea of them acquiring more theaters seemed unlikely but that is not the case. AMC’s acquisitions of the Pacific Grove 14 and the Glendale 18 Los Angeles, two very prime locations in the area, will reopen later this month. Aron revealed that AMC is working on up to eight additional locations, including at least one additional theater in the Los Angeles area, two in Chicago, and one in Atlanta. They’re being a bit mum about which ones in particular but Aron says we will know which ones they grab very soon. We do know that the Chicago area has two closed Arclights in the city and in suburban Glenview as well as the Cinemark-vacated Evanston 18. Los Angeles has more than a few locations up to grabs with one being all of ten minutes away from my mom that I’m hoping is in the running to reopen.

What are YOUR thoughts on AMC price increases, and their future plans? Do YOU think they can sustain future success?

Source: Deadline

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