AMC Entertainment beats revenue estimates as people return to theaters

FILE PHOTO: Closed signs are seen on an AMC Theatre during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in New York City, U.S., April 29, 2020. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

(Reuters) – AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc posted a smaller-than-expected fall in fourth-quarter revenue on Wednesday, as more people visited its movie theaters following the easing of coronavirus restrictions in the United States.

The COVID-19 pandemic devastated the film business in 2020, but AMC’s efforts to stay afloat by raising new capital coupled with a glimmer of hope from the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccines, signal a recovery in its hard-hit business.

Over the past few months, AMC had reopened many of its theaters and implemented COVID-19 protocols by reducing seating and disinfecting regularly, which encouraged customers to visit cinemas again.

Revenue fell to $162.5 million in the quarter ended Dec. 31, from $1.45 billion a year earlier. Analysts were expecting revenue of $142.4 million, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Net loss attributable to AMC widened to $945.8 million, or $6.21 per share, during the quarter, from $13.5 million, or 13 cents per share, a year earlier. AMC booked a $466.1 million non-cash impairment charge during the quarter.

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