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» Cinematour Forum   » Cinemas in the News   » Cinemark USA, Inc. to Buy Muvico Entertainment, LLC

   
Author Topic: Cinemark USA, Inc. to Buy Muvico Entertainment, LLC
Jerry Norwood
New Member

Posts: 43
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: Jun 2008


 - posted March 16, 2009 07:39 PM      Profile for Jerry Norwood   Email Jerry Norwood         Edit/Delete Post 
Preliminary information has crossed my desk to indicate a possible sell of Muvico Entertainment, LLC to Cinemark USA, Inc. I heard that the deal is getting signed tonight? More information forthcoming. Muvico just opened Thousand Oaks 14 in Thousand Oaks, CA. This acquistion would bring the size of Cinemark USA, Inc. close to that of AMC Entertainment, Inc. which is the second largest theatre circuit in the world behind Regal Entertainment Group.

ABOUT MUVICO
Muvico Entertainment, L.L.C. (“Muvico” or “the Company”) is a growing chain of premium, megaplex motion picture theaters in the United States. The Company currently operates 248 screens in 13 locations located in Florida, Maryland, and Illinois. The Company’s theaters have developed a reputation as true entertainment destinations — attracting patrons from as far as 25 miles away. For the fiscal year ended 2006, Muvico had revenue of $125 million. Over 11 million people attended the company’s theaters in 2006.

MUVICO LOCATIONS
Palm Harbor, FL - Palm Harbor 10
Miami, FL - Hialeah 14
Pompano Beach, FL - Pompano 18
Davie, FL - Paradise 24
Boca Raton, FL - Palace 20
Tampa, FL - Centro Ybor 20
Tampa, FL - Starlight 20
St. Petersburg, FL - Baywalk 20
West Palm Beach, FL - Parisian 20
Estero, FL - Coconut Pointe 16
Boynton Beach, FL - Boynton Beach 14
Baltimore, MD - Egyptian 24
Chicago, IL - Rosemont 18
Los Angeles, CA (Opening 2009)
New York/New Jersey (Opening 2009)
Philadelphia, PA (Opening 2009)
Fredericksburg, VA (Opening 2009)

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Christopher Crouch
Member

Posts: 292
From: Anaheim, CA
Registered: Feb 2006


 - posted March 17, 2009 01:04 AM      Profile for Christopher Crouch   Email Christopher Crouch         Edit/Delete Post 
If it pans out, Cinemark will have a mess to sort through, business wise. Last I saw, there was even a court battle over who currently controls Muvico; with IStar trying to take over and place ousted founder Hamid Hashemi back in place.

It will also be interesting to see how Cinemark's business approach meshes with Muvico, as the two have very different ideologies.

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Scott D. Neff
Tour Guide

Posts: 661
From: San Francisco, CA
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted March 17, 2009 09:49 AM      Profile for Scott D. Neff   Email Scott D. Neff         Edit/Delete Post 
This is interesting. I know I have an opinion, but not sure what exactly that opinion is.

It might be that I don't think that the Muvico Theatres I've seen were THAT special. By that I mean that the special services they offered didn't seem to be utilized to the point where the theatre was TRULY that different than any other theatre. If a building brings in 10,000 people and only 100 of them use the VIP services, big whoop. As far as the decor, I've been to Vegas, I'm not impressed by faux clouds.

As for Cinemark operating them... I think Cinemark's purchase of Century may have prepared them better to roll with the punches. Having been already a relatively laid back company (from what I understood) Cinemark can just take on Muvico and they won't freak out about the differences between existing Muvico practices and their own.

Do I think there would be a better operator? Yeah, I think AMC could do it better... but that's just based on the image I have of AMC being a super organized company. Personally though, I'd like to see regional operators keep operating regionally and not being gobbled up by bigger companies that could care less about what happens in any part of the country outside their home office.

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Chris Utley
Senior Member

Posts: 631
From: Torrance, CA
Registered: May 2003


 - posted March 17, 2009 09:19 PM      Profile for Chris Utley   Author's Homepage   Email Chris Utley         Edit/Delete Post 
They all look pretty on the outside, but I'm with Scott on this one. I don't go to theatres for faux clouds. I go to see high-powered action on large screens with earsplitting digital sound - neither of which I saw/heard at my lone visit to a Muvico theatre.

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David Au
Member

Posts: 133
From: Walnut Creek, CA
Registered: Sep 2006


 - posted March 17, 2009 10:38 PM      Profile for David Au   Email David Au         Edit/Delete Post 
I thought that the Muvico that recently opened in California was originally supposed to be a Mann Theatre. Is it possible that the small screens were the result of Mann's design?

The Muvico Theaters designed and built by Muvico seem to have at least some big screens.

I visited a recently opened Century Theatre which was equipped with Cinemark equipment. The sound from the JBL speakers was ok. However, of the 3 major movie theater chains, AMC seems to have the best sound systems. I have experienced the sound in their new theaters and it is quite good. They seem to install high quality sound equipment. Regal does not seem to use the best speakers. They exclusively use Klipsch. Klipsch makes really underpowered and terrible sounding speakers.

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Christopher Crouch
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Posts: 292
From: Anaheim, CA
Registered: Feb 2006


 - posted March 18, 2009 02:57 AM      Profile for Christopher Crouch   Email Christopher Crouch         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
I thought that the Muvico that recently opened in California was originally supposed to be a Mann Theatre. Is it possible that the small screens were the result of Mann's design?

The site was originally tagged as a Mann project. However, to the best of my knowledge, Mann dropped out long before construction began and the theatre is a Muvico design.

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Adam Martin
Administrator

Posts: 1090
From: Dallas, TX
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted March 18, 2009 09:38 AM      Profile for Adam Martin   Author's Homepage   Email Adam Martin         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Century Theatre which was equipped with Cinemark equipment
Century was committed to Dolby and had Dolby processors and Dolby Digital in every auditorium except for the one discount theater in Tucson (which still had Dolby processors, just not digital).

Cinemark doesn't seem to be committed to much of anything. The new Century location in Reno, which opened as a Cinemark, doesn't even have digital sound in every auditorium.

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Adam Martin
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Posts: 1090
From: Dallas, TX
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted March 19, 2009 11:18 AM      Profile for Adam Martin   Author's Homepage   Email Adam Martin         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Troubled Muvico sells 4 theaters to Cinemark
Cinemark Holdings makes its entry into South Florida by buying four of the financially troubled Muvico theaters.

BY ELAINE WALKER

In order to avoid a bankruptcy filing or a takeover by its lender, Muvico Entertainment on Wednesday agreed to sell four of its top performing theaters to Cinemark Holdings.

The Fort Lauderdale-based Muvico is selling Paradise 24 in Davie, Palace 20 in Boca Raton, Boynton Beach 14 and another theater in Maryland. Cinemark Vice President James Meredith said the company will take over operations Thursday.

''We're very excited to add these high-quality theaters,'' said Meredith, vice president of marketing and communications for Cinemark, who declined to reveal the terms of the deal. ``We view [South Florida] as one of the top markets in the country.''

All Muvico theater employees have been offered jobs with Cinemark, Meredith said. Cinemark will also honor all Muvico prepaid tickets or discount coupons until the end of May.

''Our goal is to implement a seamless transition,'' he said. ``For right now we want to make sure the customer doesn't experience any change.''

Muvico Chief Executive Michael Whalen told The Palm Beach Post that with this deal,``Muvico survives.''

The money will be used to retire the $55 million debt to iStar Financial. Muvico had failed to make payments on the debt since October. The New York real estate investment trust had started foreclosing on the loan and trying to take control of the company through litigation.

Meanwhile, another landlord sued to evict Muvico from its Davie and Pompano Beach locations and one of its Tampa theaters.

The sale will leave Muvico with 10 theaters, including locations in Pompano Beach, Hialeah and West Palm Beach. But a number of those theaters have been struggling.

Whalen said Muvico Chairman Joe Amaturo plans to make a major investment in the company, which will be used to upgrade its remaining theaters.

For example about $1 million will be spent on upgrades at the Muvico Parisian at CityPlace in West Palm Beach, including the creation of a Sony Playstation lounge. Muvico also will trim the number of auditoriums from 20 to 16.

''Our goal is to get people to come to the theaters more often,'' Whalen said.

While Cinemark plans to maintain the Muvico name during a transition period, the theaters will be rebranded under the Cinemark name within three to six months, Meredith said.

The Muvico acquisition marks the first entry into South Florida for Cinemark, which has 420 theaters in 38 states and 12 countries. Cinemark has two Florida theaters -- one in Orlando and another in Jacksonville.

Landlords are hoping Muvico will have enough capital to move forward with its future development commitments.

Muvico has plans in the works for opening at CocoWalk in Miami and Fashion Mall in Plantation.

At CocoWalk, Muvico is in the midst of getting city permits to renovate the old AMC Theater.

Plans call for a November opening, said Mia Stierheim, who handles the leasing for CocoWalk. ''They've assured us everything is a green light,'' Stierheim said.

Information from The Palm Beach Post was used to supplement this report.


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Jerry Norwood
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Posts: 43
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: Jun 2008


 - posted March 23, 2009 04:08 PM      Profile for Jerry Norwood   Email Jerry Norwood         Edit/Delete Post 
I guess Muvico backed away from a full acquisition at the last minute? Since Muvico lost their powerhouse Egyptian 24 in Maryland, they won't be pulling in a huge amount of capital along with the sell of it's other four theatre assets. Egyptian 24 remains in the top 10 box office grossing theatres in North America.

[ March 24, 2009, 04:56 PM: Message edited by: Jerry Norwood ]

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David Au
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Posts: 133
From: Walnut Creek, CA
Registered: Sep 2006


 - posted March 23, 2009 07:21 PM      Profile for David Au   Email David Au         Edit/Delete Post 
I don't believe Muvico wanted to sell completely. They sold a few of their theaters just to raise some money to stay alive.

The company is financially troubled and struggling. No company would want to buy them entirely because Muvico has a lot of debt.

Muvico wants to remain an independent company and they are going to spend money to fix up their remaining theaters and try to make a profit.

If they are in such dire financial straits, it means that there is something wrong with how they run their theaters. I have heard complaints about their food and their high prices. Do they even taste test their own food? Their theaters are all hype. Some of them may look nice, but if the high-priced food is stale and tastes terrible, people won't be going back. They need to make improvements to what matters: food quality, projection quality, friendly customer service, getting rid of loud rude patrons, etc.

Fixing up the theaters to look nicer will be wasted money when they should focus on what matters to their customers.

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Jerry Norwood
New Member

Posts: 43
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: Jun 2008


 - posted March 23, 2009 08:21 PM      Profile for Jerry Norwood   Email Jerry Norwood         Edit/Delete Post 
I don't think fixing up their theaters is a waste of money if it is in conjunction with other operational changes. I know first hand being a Director of Operations in the theater business that "looks" matter....but not "looks" alone.

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