AMC Theatres considering launch of crypto and NFT tickets

By Raffaele Redi

The entertainment company reduced its losses in Q3 2021 to $224.2m, beating expectations

AMC 25 and Regal Cinemas in Times Square, New York                                 
For the first time since Q4 2019, all of AMC’s theatres worldwide were open for the entirety of a calendar quarter – Photo: Shutterstock
                                

AMC Theatres CEO, Adam Aron, said the company is exploring the possibility of launching an AMC cryptocurrency alongside commemorative movie tickets as non-fungible-tokens (NFTs). The announcement came as the entertainment company reduced its losses in Q3 2021 to $224.2m, beating expectations, although its adjusted EBITDA is still below pre-pandemic levels, at a negative $5.4m.

The company has been speaking publicly in recent months about cryptocurrencies and NFTs.

“I can confirm today that we have been exploring with third parties over the past few months both how we can accept cryptocurrency and if it is feasible for AMC to consider even launching our own cryptocurrency,” Aron said, during the AMC Q3 earnings call.

Commemorative movie tickets as NFTs

The CEO said AMC had already commenced discussions with multiple major Hollywood studios about launching NFTs in conjunction with some of the movie titles that are playing in AMC theatres.

“Similarly, I can confirm to you today that we are now in conversation with multiple major Hollywood studios about the concept of joint venturing commemorative NFTs related to major film titles that show in our theatres,” he said.

Aron added: “The regulatory climate is fast-moving and could affect our thinking and there can be no assurance how, when or if we will proceed.

“There’s nothing to report today but stay tuned. This space is very intriguing to us.” 

Funding the crypto projects

Alongside continuously developing crypto regulation around the world, the company said it has to deal with its financial condition amid the fourth wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.

As of 30 September 2021, the company reported cash of $1,612.5m, excluding restricted cash of $27.7m.

AMC currently has liquidity availability of more than $1.8bn, including cash and undrawn revolver lines; however, the company does not anticipate the need to borrow under the revolver lines during the next 12 months.

Challenge still to be met

“We are not yet where we want and need to be. We wish to emphasise that no one should have any illusions that there is no more challenge ahead of us still to be met. The virus continues to be with us and we need to sell more tickets in future quarters than we did in the most recent quarter,” said Aron.

“For the first time since the fourth quarter of 2019, substantially all of our worldwide theatres were open for the entirety of a calendar quarter. More important than beating expectations, however, is the significant progress AMC has been making with financial results,” he added.

Popcorn added to programme

The company recently decided to enter the popcorn industry, operating shopping mall stores and kiosks, starting in 2022, while saying it is also working with home delivery services and supermarkets.

AMC stock is set to open its trading session 4.9% lower at $42.85, pre-market data suggests (12:15 UTC), while it closed yesterday at $45.06, an increase of 8%.

AMC Theatres did not immediately respond to a request for comments.

Further reading: Burger King US dishes out crypto with purchases

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