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AMC Has a Strong Release Schedule in 2019

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Jan. 18 2019, Updated 11:13 a.m. ET

Future expectations

For the fourth quarter of fiscal 2018, Wall Street analysts expect AMC Entertainment’s (AMC) revenues to decline 1.2% YoY (year-over-year) to $1.40 billion. For fiscal 2018, analysts forecast revenue growth of 7.2% YoY to $5.45 billion. For fiscal 2019, analysts expect the company’s revenues to increase 3.2% to $5.62 billion YoY. AMC Entertainment’s management hasn’t provided the revenue outlook.

The fourth-quarter revenues could be impacted due to a tougher YoY comparison with Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which was released last December. The absence of a big movie title like that in the fourth quarter could impact AMC’s top line. Some of the notable releases in the fourth quarter including Aquaman, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, and Mary Poppins Returns grossed $67.9 million, $35.4 million, and $23.5 million on their respective opening weekends in December, according to Box Office Mojo. Warner Bros’ Aquaman has grossed over $1 billion at the global box office, according to Box Office Mojo.

If we look at AMC’s closest competitor, Cinemark Holdings (CNK), analysts expect the fourth-quarter revenues to increase 0.3% to $752.3 million. For 2018, the revenues are projected to increase 6.1% to $3.17 billion. For 2019, the revenue growth is expected to be 3.4% to $3.28 billion.

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For 2019, theater chains like AMC Entertainment and Cinemark Holdings are expected to benefit from the strong movie release line up. The pipeline for 2019 includes Captain MarvelAvengers: EndgameAladdinToy Story 4, Frozen 2X-Men: Dark Phoenix, and the last installment in the latest Star Wars Trilogy.

Loyalty membership program

In June, AMC Entertainment added a new tier called “Stubs A-List” to its AMC Stubs loyalty program. The AMC Stubs loyalty program had over 13.7 million US members. Currently, the membership has risen to more than 18 million members in the United States. AMC credited all of its tiers namely, Stubs A-List, Stubs Premiere, and Stubs Insider, for boosting the overall membership.

Within six months of the launch, Stubs A-List has gained more than 600,000 members. The program was expected to add 500,000 members in the first year. Stubs A-List allows members to attend three movies per week in all of the format theaters. The program allows advanced and last-minute bookings. Stubs A-List was AMC’s attempt to contain the growing threat from MoviePass.

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