AMC Entertainment said Saudi Entertainment Ventures (SEVEN) will buy out its investment in movie theater venture, Saudi Cinema Company, for $30 million
AMC said the agreement calls for it to transition from a management and investment role in SCC to “a pure licensing relationship.” Current AMC Cinemas and future locations operated by SCC will retain the AMC Cinemas name and other IP through the licensing agreement.
The deal dates back to 2017 when AMC entered a non-binding memorandum of understanding with the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia to explore bringing theatrical exhibition to the Kingdom for the first time since the 1980s. AMC hosted the country’s first movie screening in 2018 at King Abdullah Financial District, Riyadh. It partnered with Saudi Entertainment Ventures to form SCC to develop and operate additional locations across the Kingdom.
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During the next four years, in collaboration with SEVEN, AMC opened another 12 locations with more in the pipeline, guided the company during Covid, and hired and trained corporate functions and theater management and staff.
“When the joint venture was created, it had two goals. First, to bring moviegoing to the Saudi people. Second, and equally important, to train a theatre management and corporate team such that at some point in the future, the enterprise could be run locally within the Kingdom. After more than five years since our first trip to Saudi Arabia and nearly five years since we opened our first theatre there, that point in the future is now. This announcement and agreement is the natural next step in this process.”
“We have enormous confidence in the team running these theatres and the venture is moving to the next stage exactly as we envisioned at the time we started. We look forward to continuing our relationship with SCC and the great people at SEVEN in bringing the AMC movie-going experience to Saudi audiences for years to come,” he said.
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