Recession doesn't squeeze Cinedigm financing


Cinedigm Digital Cinema, which changed its name from Access Integrated Technologies last week, has raised an initial $8.9 million in financing for its Phase 2 digital-cinema deployment plan.

The facility will fund the launch of Cinedigm's first 137 Phase 2 conversions of Premiere Cinemas theaters to the Cinedigm d-cinema platform. The first 35 systems are expected to be operational this month, with a Phase 2 total of 55 by year's end.

Under its Phase 1 plan, the company deployed 3,700 screens, the majority of the d-cinema screens in the domestic market.

The Phase 2 plan ultimately is expected to equip as many as 10,000 screens. To date, Cinedigm has signed almost 500 screens to the plan.

The deal with an undisclosed credit facility comes at a time when the d-cinema transition essentially is stalled because of the challenge of raising financing in the current economic climate.

D-cinema screens are needed to offer 3-D, and more than a dozen 3-D films are slated to open in 2009.

"Our goal is to continue to sign thousands of additional screens in the months ahead in anticipation of additional financing from a variety of sources," Cinedigm chief Bud Mayo said. (partialdiff)