Salem Radio Network News Friday, December 3, 2021

Business

Regal owner Cineworld says revenue above pre-COVID-19 levels in UK, Ireland

(Reuters) -Cineworld’s revenue has grown steadily since reopening and touched 90% of pre-pandemic levels in October, the cinema operator said on Monday, adding that the UK and Ireland were experiencing greater demand compared with in 2019.

The world’s second-largest theatre operator also said the recovery has been driven by a strong slate of movies including “Black Widow” and “No Time to Die” and that it anticipates upcoming blockbusters to perform well if there is no deterioration in the COVID-19 situation.

Cinema operators globally are relying on blockbusters, including the upcoming “The Matrix Resurrections”, to help them get back on their feet after being battered by the COVID-19 pandemic and greater competition from streaming services.

Cineworld, which reopened theatres in April, said its October revenue from the UK and Ireland jumped to 127% of 2019 levels, while the United States touched 80%.

Shares of the company, which gets the bulk of its revenue from its Regal cinemas in the United States, rose 5% by 0805 GMT on the FTSE midcap index.

As a result of the improvement in revenue and tighter control of costs, Cineworld said it generated positive cash flow in October and described it as an important milestone in its recovery.

Its larger rival AMC Entertainment last week comfortably beat estimates for quarterly revenue. However, its boss warned that there were coronavirus-related challenges ahead.

(Reporting by Chris Peters in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)

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