Exhibition Giant AMC Entertainment Prices IPO at Low End of Range

Movie Theater Audience - H 2012
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Movie Theater Audience - H 2012

The company, controlled by China's Dalian Wanda Group, prices its stock at $18 and eyes net proceeds of approximately $314 million.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, the U.S. movie theater chain controlled by China's Dalian Wanda Group, said late Tuesday that it has priced the stock for its IPO at $18 per share, the low end of the previously announced $18-$20 range.

Wanda is led by the country's richest man Wang Jianlin.

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The offering of more than 18.4 million shares of Class A common stock is expected to raise $314.2 million. The company plans to use the net proceeds to retire debt and for general corporate purposes.

The stock is expected to begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange under ticker symbol "AMC" on a when-issued basis, a trial run of sorts, on Wednesday. Regular trading starts Monday.

AMC is the second-largest movie theater group in the U.S. by revenue behind Regal Entertainment. Its revenue amounted to $2.04 billion in the first nine months of 2013. It has nearly 4,950 screens.

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The IPO will take the company public for the first time in nine years after previous attempts had been shelved. Wanda, which acquired AMC last year for $2.6 billion, including debt, will retain a roughly 80 percent stake.

Chairman Wang said in recent months that the group is planning further moves into the entertainment industry. For example, in September it unveiled an $8.2 billion studio plan.

E-mail: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai