Movie theater operator Cinemark Holdings Inc. said late Wednesday that it will boost the number of 3-D screens it operates to between 1,100 to 1,300 by the end of the year, up from 400, after a major round of financing came through.
After that, Cinemark plans to focus on outfitting all of its remaining theaters worldwide with digital projectors.
Currently, only some theaters can show movies in 3-D because not all theater owners have purchased new digital projectors and undertaken other upgrades that are necessary to show films in the format. In total, about 3,900 to 4,000 3-D-ready screens are expected to be available in the United States and Canada by the end of March.
The announcement from Cinemark follows the raising of $660 million in financing by Digital Cinema Implementation Partners LLC, a joint venture of Cinemark and theater chains AMC Entertainment Inc. and Regal Entertainment Group.
The financing was advised by J.P. Morgan and Blackstone Advisory Partners LP.
It includes $445 million in senior bank debt, $135 million in additional junior capital and $80 million in equity from Cinemark, AMC and Regal and will be used to bring digital projection systems to almost 14,000 screens in North America run by these companies.
Also Thursday, Cinemark said it will file a supplement to a current shelf registration statement with the SEC since stockholders Madison Dearborn Capital Partners IV LP, Syufy Enterprises LP and the Mitchell Special Trust are selling some of their shares.
Cinemark said that Madison Dearborn will offer 7.7 million shares, Syufy Enterprises will offer 1.3 million shares and the Mitchell Special Trust will offer 1 million shares of stock through a public offering underwritten by Morgan Stanley & Co. and Barclays Capital Inc.
Once the offering is finished, Madison Dearborn will own 32.1 percent of the company's common stock, while Syufy Enterprises will own 5.3 percent and the Mitchell Special Trust 4.9 percent.
Cinemark shares closed Wednesday at $18.16.
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