Shares of movie theater operator Regal Entertainment Group hit a 52-week high today — $21.08.
The Knoxville based company has seen its stock price climb slowly but steadily over the last 12 months. Since Jan. 1, shares have gained more than 8 percent.
In early afternoon trading, the price had slipped back from the 52-week high, trading at $21.02, up 11 cents from Tuesday’s closing price.
At least one analyst thinks Regal, the largest movie theater operator in the country, could see its shares hit $23 by the end of this year.
Writing for the financial website Seeking Alpha, research analyst Gary Bourgeault says:
“If it is able to sustainably trade above $20.00 per share, I believe the company will be rewarded by investors. With the summer season upon us, and the holiday season to follow, I see the share price of Regal breaking the $23.00 mark by the end of 2014, as blockbusters like The Hunger Games and The Hobbit are released, along with the ongoing benefit of an increase in adjusted EBITDA to $137 million in the first quarter, with expectations that should continue to grow through the end of the year.”
Click here for Bourgeault’s full report.
A Regal Entertainment Group movie theater in Los Angeles will be the first theater in the U.S. to get new 4D technology.
AEG, a global sports and entertainment presenter, announced Monday that it has signed a deal with a South Korean company, CJ 4DPlex, to open a 4D theater at Regal Cinemas L.A. Live Stadium 14 in Los Angeles this summer.
“Los Angeles was the natural choice for the first U.S. location to carry 4DX. We wanted to bring this experience to where all the movie magic happens,” Byung Hwan Choi, CEO of CJ 4DPlex, said in a news release.
Officials with Knoxville-based Regal Entertainment, the largest movie theater operator in the U.S., could not be immediately reached for comment.
The new movie technology delivers an “immersive 4D experience to excite all five human senses. Features include motion, wind, strobe, fog, vibration, mist, rain and even scent-based special effects that go far beyond 3D,” the release says.
Some 14,000 4D seats are currently available in 91 theaters in 23 countries.
It’s uncertain how fast 4D tech will spread to other U.S. theaters or if it will make it to Knoxville. But it would be cool way to experience a blockbuster action movie.
AEG is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Anschutz Company, a major investor in Regal Entertainment.
CJ 4DPlex is the world’s first 4D cinema company for feature films. Headquartered in Seoul and with international offices in Los Angeles and Beijing, the company provides 4DX cinema systems for exhibition partners along with 4DX codes of major Hollywood titles.
Click here for the AEG news release
Drones have been in the news recently and now you have a chance to win your very own unmanned aerial vehicle.
If you are a Regal Crown Club member, that is.
Knoxville-based movie theater operator Regal Entertainment Group announced that it will give away a drone to a lucky Crown Club member who buys a ticket for the new movie “RoboCop.”
The winner will be chosen in a random drawing.
“Just as OmniCorp maintains its role as the center of robot and drone technology in the year 2028 in the film ‘RoboCop,’ Regal wanted to provide its most loyal fans a chance to win an innovative and cutting-edge drone of their very own,” Ken Thewes, chief marketing officer for Regal said in a news release.
Drones made headlines last week Knoxville when an unmanned aerial vehicle was used to inspect the fire-damaged McClung warehouses in downtown Knoxville.
Questions were raised about a possible violation of a federal ban on using drones for commercial purposes.
Personal use of a drone is apparently OK with the feds. Think of the fun you’ll have swooping around the neighborhood, scaring dogs, snapping pictures of …. whatever.
The drone built by Lehman Aviation comes with a camera, batteries, storage/shipping case and a Sony tablet, according to a news release.
Click here for the Regal announcement.
Knoxville businesswoman Amy Miles, CEO of movie theater operator Regal Entertainment Group, is taking her business acumen to Norfolk Southern railroad.
Miles was one of two directors elected to the Norfolk Southern Corp. board effective Tuesday, the railroad announced.
Miles, who has been CEO of Knoxville-based Regal since 2009, was appointed to the Norfolk Southern board’s audit and finance committees.
Like many executives, Miles serves on a number of corporate and nonprofit boards, including National CineMedia Inc., a digital in-theater media network, co-owned by Regal; the Regal Foundation, and Variety of Eastern Tennessee, a children’s charity.
She also is an executive board member of the National Association of Theater Owners.
Also elected to the Norfolk Southern board was James A. Squires, who was appointed president of Norfolk Southern last year.
Miles could not immediately be reached for comment on the railroad appointment.
Naming a movie theater executive to a railroad board may seem a stretch, but Norfolk Southern has a major presence in Knoxville.
Last year it opened a $5.9 million rail/truck transfer terminal on Tennessee Avenue giving companies that lack direct rail connections a way to access rail.
Knoxville also sits along the Crescent Corridor, Norfolk Southern’s 2,500-mile intermodal network that stretches from Louisiana to New York.
Regal is the largest movie theater operator in the country with 580 theaters in 42 states, the District of Columbia and Guam, Saipan, American Samoa.
Movie theater operator Regal Entertainment Group reported record high fiscal second quarter revenues, but a slight decrease in profits. Next week, investors will find out if the trend continued in the third quarter.
The Knoxville-based company said it will post its quarterly financial report after the market closes on Oct. 24. A conference call with analysts will be held at 4:30 p.m. following release of the report.
Given a strong box office in recent months, Regal likely will report a good, if not record-breaking revenues, for the fiscal third quarter.
But what can shareholders expect in the long-run? Since the first of the year, Regal’s shares have gained more than 38 percent. Will that kind of growth continue?
Chatter from stock watchers on the Web is generally positive.
Here’s an excerpt from a Motley Fool report:
“Regal Entertainment delivered a lot of impressive numbers in Fiscal 2013, including a 3.6% increase in attendance and a 0.3% bump in average ticket price. However, comp screen attendance dropped 2.4%. The improved attendance occurred because of the company’s recent acquisitions, instead of repeat moviegoers. This likely indicates that fewer people are going to the movies than in the past, which would make Regal Entertainment’s potential to grow the top and bottom lines simultaneously very challenging. That being said, shareholders should take heart as Regal Entertainment is willing to close under-performing theaters — it closed six theaters (52 screens) in Fiscal 2013.”
A Seeking Alpha contributor is even more bullish on Regal:
“While shares of Regal Entertainment have rallied nicely from here, I believe the bull run is far from over. The movie-going business has proven to be extremely resilient, virtually immune from home watching with annual sales growth of 3%. At the same time, Regal has recognized that increased concession sales are far more lucrative than increased ticket sales and has focused its business appropriately through expanded menus and a pilot dine-at-your-seat program. These factors will help RGC grow faster than the industry while improving overall margins.”
Regal is the largest movie theater operator in the country with more than 7,300 screens in 575 theaters nationwide and Guam, Saipan, American Samoa.
Click here for the Motley Fool analysis.
Click here for the Seeking Alpha report.
A battle of movie theater titans is starting to take shape.
AMC Entertainment, the second largest movie theater network in the country after Knoxville-based Regal Entertainment Group, recently announced plans for a $400 million initial public offering.
Proceeds from the IPO are earmarked for expansion and debt payments.
AMC hasn’t offered details of its growth plan, but Regal will undoubtedly be keeping a close eye on the Kansas-based company’s expansion.
AMC was bought last year by Chinese billionaire Wang Jianlin’s Dalian Wanda Group for $2.6 billion.
Wanda bills itself as the largest movie theater operator in the world.
While Wanda may be the world’s biggest, but Regal has a considerable lead over AMC when it comes to the U.S.
AMC currently operates 342 theaters with 4,941 screens in the U.S., according to its website. Regal has 7,340 screens in 576 theaters. Virtually all of Regal’s screens are in the U.S. mainland, although it also has theaters in Guam, Saipan and American Samoa.
Speaking of selling stock, Regal announced Tuesday a secondary offering of 2 million shares of National CineMedia. Regal is a founding member of National CineMedia, a digital in-theater network that offers advertising and special events.
Click here for Bloomberg’s take on AMC’s IPO.
Texting in a darkened movie theater used to be considered a serious breach of the movie-watching experience.
But bad manners could become the norm.
Blogger Hunter Walk recently sparked a fire storm with a post suggesting that movie theaters should cater to those who want to text and otherwise interact with the world while watching a movie.
“Instead of driving people like me away from the theater, why not just segregate us into environments which meet our needs. I’d love to watch Pacific Rim in a theater with a bit more light, wifi, electricity outlets and a second screen experience,” he wrote.
The San Francisco blogger received hundreds of comments — many, but not all, of them were negative.
Forbes media and entertainment contributor Scott Mendelson responded with a lengthy column on why Walk’s suggestion is a disturbing idea.
“It’s not just a blow against civilized movie-going, the ability to turn off the constant flow of digital information, and the idea that people should actually follow the rules of the establishments they choose to visit; it’s a blow for variety in the kinds of movies that arrive at a theater near you,” Mendelson wrote.
But Walk’s suggestion could gain traction.
The largest movie theater network in the country — Knoxville-based Regal Entertainment Group — recently held a special “interactive” showing of “Sharknado” in Los Angeles.
“Usually we ask guests to keep the cell phones off during shows and not to distract others. But for ‘Sharknado’ half the fun is sharing a reaction, and hearing a riff from someone else,” Regal senior vice president Neal Pinsker said in a news release.
The “Sharkanado” event may have been a success but I’m with Mendelson. Movie theaters should be texting-free zones — at least while the movie is on.
Click here for the Hunter Walk post.
Click here for Mendelson’s response.
After a disappointing first-quarter, Regal Entertainment Group’s second-quarter is looking much improved thanks to a string of blockbusters like “Iron Man 3,” “Star Trek: Into Darkness,” “The Great Gatsby” and others.
Summer ticket sales are up sharply from a year ago — about 14 percent, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal’s Marketwatch web site.
And when admissions are up that means the Knoxville-based theater operator is selling more popcorn, soda, candy and other high-margin concessions.
Regal reported a first-quarter profit of $22.5 million, a 51 percent drop from the 2012 1Q.
The 2013 second-quarter should be much improved.
“As measured from the first weekend of May through July 1, the 2013 year-to-date summer movie season has generated more than $2.4 billion in gross box-office receipts according to data compiled by Boxofficemojo.com. That’s up nearly 14% from 2012’s result and is the first double-digit year-over-year gain since 2002. And the season isn’t out of steam yet, with upcoming titles like “The Wolverine,” “Elysium” and “Pacific Rim,” Marketwatch reported.
Click here for the Marketwatch report comparing Regal and competitor Cinemark.