March 15, 2018 / 7:36 AM / 2 years ago

Cineworld's full-year revenue rises on blockbuster releases

(Reuters) - Britain’s Cineworld Group (CINE.L), which bought U.S. cinema chain Regal Entertainment last year, said full-year revenue rose 11.6 percent, driven by blockbusters such as “Beauty and the Beast”, “Dunkirk” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”.

Cineworld, which is fighting to overcome rising competition from digital streaming platforms, said admissions rose 3.5 percent, while box office revenues rose 6.4 percent with average ticket price hitting 5.33 pounds.

In December, Cineworld sealed an agreement to buy larger U.S. firm Regal Entertainment - which owns 561 theatres with 7,315 screens - in a deal to create the world’s second biggest movie theatre operator.

The combined company is only second to U.S. industry leader AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc (AMC.N), giving Cineworld more scale to fight increasing competition from Netflix Inc (NFLX.O), Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and other digital outlets.

The deal came in the backdrop of cooling footfalls in cinemas as operators struggle to win viewers amid a rise in competition from digital streaming platforms such as Netflix and Hulu.

The company said adjusted core earnings rose 12.7 percent to 198.2 million pounds. Total revenue rose to 890.7 million pounds, in line with analysts’ average estimate of 890.4 million pounds.

Reporting by Rahul B and Arathy S Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Gopakumar Warrier

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