Bridgepoint gets theatrical with £356m deal for Nordic Cinema

Michael Bow
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Nordic Cinema Group has 66 cinemas and 444 screens across four major regions
BRIDGEPOINT yesterday snapped up the Nordic Cinema Group, the region’s biggest movie theatre chain, for 4.7bn Swedish crowns (£356m).

The Pret-a-manger owner has agreed to buy a 58 per cent stake owned by previous private equity owner Ratos and a 40 per cent stake belonging to media group Bonnier.

Management retains a stake and Bonnier will re-invest to take a minority share of the firm.

“We believe there is scope to further enrich the whole cinema experience, from the venue in itself, sound, seats and availability to food and drinks,” Bridgepoint’s nordic chair Mikael Lovgren said.

The group trades under four brands – SF Bio in Sweden, SF Kino in Norway, Finnkino in Finland and Forum Cinemas in the Baltics.

Revenues of 2.61bn Swedish crowns and earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation of 533m Swedish crowns helped make it the region’s market leader last year. The deal marks Bridgepoint’s second deal this year after it paid £250m to acquire dining outfit Azzurri, parent of the Ask and Zizzi chains.