Pass the popcorn: Competition watchdog considers AMC takeover of Odeon cinemas

William Turvill
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Popcorn at cinema
AMC announced its £921m deal to buy Odeon in July (Source: Getty)

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has launched an inquiry into AMC Theatres’ acquisition of Odeon.

AMC agreed a £921m deal to buy Odeon from private equity group Terra Firma Capital Partners in July.

Read more: AMC Theatres set to buy Odeon cinema chain in £921m deal

The CMA today announced the launch of an inquiry into “whether it is or may be the case that this transaction, if carried into effect, will result in the creation of a relevant merger” for further attention.

“[A]nd, if so, whether the creation of that situation may be expected to result in a substantial lessening of competition within any market or markets in the United Kingdom for goods or services.”

The deal to buy Odeon and UCI Cinemas group will make AMC Enterainment Holdings, which owns AMC Theatres, the largest cinema operator in the world.

Read more: Cinema chain Vue hails blockbuster first-half results

The £921m will be comprised of £500m in equity, of which 75 per cent will be cash and 25 per cent in stock consideration, as well as the assumption of £407m of net debt.

Odeon is Europe's leading cinema chain, with more than 240 cinemas and 2,200 screens in seven countries including the UK, Spain, Portugal and Ireland.

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