Top Cineworld shareholder dumps stake as firm faces bankruptcy
A major shareholder in Cineworld has shed almost the entirety of his stake in the past two days as the beleaguered cinema chain teeters on the edge of bankruptcy.
Shares in Cineworld have been in freefall in the past week after the chain confirmed it was considering filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US, as it struggles with nearly $4.8bn of debt taken on prior to the pandemic.
According to filings on the London Stock Exchange in the past two days, the firm’s second largest shareholder, Chinese tycoon Zai Wang Liu’s firm Jangho Group, has slashed its stake from 11.6 per cent to just 1.6 per cent in the past two days.
Wang Liu previously amassed a stake of 13.8 per cent of the firm in 2020 when he took advantage of its depressed share price to scoop up shares.
Shares in the firm have surged today despite the move from Wang Liu, trading up 35.5 per cent, but remain down 80 per cent this month.
Cineworld, which has 127 branches in the UK and also owns the Picturehouse chain, was revealed yesterday to have also misidentified its largest shareholder in its latest set of accounts as it struggles to keep track of its complex and changing investor base.
Its largest shareholder is the family of Mooky and Israel Greidinger, who serve as chief executive and deputy chief executive respectively.
Cineworld declined to comment. Jangho Group has been contacted for comment.