Giant theater chain AMC Entertainment saw sales blow past Wall Street forecasts for the March quarter, rising 20% to $954 million.
Losses narrowed by $102 million to $235 million, for an adjusted EPS of 17 cents a share, a also ahead of expectations.
“It will take a few more years for the industry box office to return near to pre-pandemic levels, and our ability to raise additional capital during this extended recovery period will be a crucial component of our success. We will continue our fight to preserve our agility and to remain on our recovery trajectory, as we work hard to position AMC for long-term success,” said CEO Adam Aron.
A hearing set for late June in Delaware Chancery Court may determine if and when AMC will have that ability to sell shares and raise cash.
That said, he noted that results represent AMC’s strongest first quarter in four years. And the first quarter of 2023 and fourth quarter of 2022 mark the first two consecutive quarters of positive adjusted EBITDA since March of 2020 — “testament to the ongoing recovery in the industrywide box office.”
Theater attendance of 48 million was driven by Avatar: The Way Of Water; Marvel’s Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania, Creed III, Scream VI, Shazam! Fury Of The Gods and John Wick Chapter 4.
“As I have said for years, when our studio partners showcase their magical storytelling, there is robust demand to be realized at AMC theatres both in the U.S. and abroad.” Aron said. “We believe the first quarter of 2023 is just the tip of the iceberg for what’s to come in the remainder of the year.”
He’ll be addressing investors on a call shortly.