Two of the world’s largest movie theatre chains have raised additional equity capital during September, giving them a little more runway as they recover from the pandemic.
AMC, the world’s largest motion picture exhibitor, raised approximately USD $325.5 million of new equity capital through the sale of 40 million shares, at an average price of approximately USD $8.14 per share. This was made possible after agreeing to an estimated USD $129 million settlement in a shareholder lawsuit which paved the way for the company’s share conversion and 10-to-1 reverse stock split back in August. The discounted at-the-market offering on 13 September helped boost the company’s cash reserves, addressing its current liquidity concerns and strengthening its balance sheet. This is on top of the strong third-quarter industry box office, which at the time of the equity offering, was up by 39% in the third quarter over the sam period from 2022.
South Korea’s largest cinema operator, CJ CGV, also faced shareholder resistance upon trying to raise additional capital. On the same day AMC turned to the market to sell new shares, CJ CGV brought in KRW 3.33 trillion won (USD $2.51 billion) through an offering of KRW 44 billion won worth of its shares, for a completion rate of 75.7 to 1. Originally CJ CGV was hoping to rase over a trillion won (USD $754 million) from existing shareholders, but after the company’s stock price dropped, it lowered its goal by KRW 130 billion won (USD $96.1 million). Like AMC, the new cash helps CJ CGV strengthen its balance sheet. They will use a large portion of it to pay down debt. Analysts are forecasting the company’s revenue will be 120% of 2019 levels next year.