Cineworld, owner of Regal Cinemas in the United States, says it could file for bankruptcy – NBC Bay Area

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Cineworld Group PLC, one of the world’s biggest movie theater chains, said on Monday it was considering filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the United States and other similar actions elsewhere.

The British company, which owns Regal Cinemas in the US and operates in 10 countries, said bankruptcy is an option it is considering to help preserve a business that has struggled to recover from the impact of restrictions COVID-19.

Cineworld said it was in talks with key stakeholders such as lenders. It expects operations to proceed as normal after any filings and “ultimately to continue operations for the longer term without significant impact to its employees.” It has about 28,000 workers, according to the company’s website.

Shares of the company fell 58% on Friday after the Wall Street Journal reported that the company was preparing to file for bankruptcy within weeks.

Cineworld, which has 9,189 screens at 751 locations, said Monday it was open for business and was still evaluating its options to increase cash flow and possibly restructure.

In March, the company said COVID-19 shutdowns in the first part of last year had taken their toll, reporting a $565.8 million after-tax loss and debt. of $4.8 million. It also took a hit by ending its 2020 takeover of Canadian film company Cineplex Inc. An Ontario court agreed with Cineplex that the UK company had defaulted and awarded $1.23 billion. Canadian dollars ($947.5 million) in damages. Cineworld appealed.

Despite the obstacles, Cineworld said pent-up demand to see films on the big screen helped its bottom line late last year. He also expected blockbusters like ‘Top Gun: Maverick’, ‘Jurassic World: Dominion’ and others to help him ‘continue to bounce back strongly’.

Shares of AMC and Cinemark, two major U.S.-based movie chains, also fell ahead of the opening bell in New York.

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