IMax Plans European Expansion

By Alan Spencer
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According to a BBC news story, Imax, which owns Odeon among other brands, is to more than double the number of its large screens in European by creating 25 new Imax cinemas over the next three years, about 10 of which will be in the UK. Others will be built in Germany, Italy, Spain and Scandinavia. The total number of Imax cinemas run by all chains in Europe will be close to 250 when completed, although this will be far less than the 800 cinemas in existence, or in development, in China and the 350 currently in the US.

AMC and Imax expect to jointly spend about $25m on the expansion plan and will subsequently share the revenues. AMC is making the investment five months after taking over Odeon and a month after its acquisition of Nordic Cinemas. It is also now engaged in a wider effort to upgrade its cinemas.

Robert Mitchell from the trade magazine Variety, questioned whether the venture will succeed in countries like Germany, where cinema attendance has been dropping for the last couple of years and where Imax only has a few screens at present, and therefore is less well known.

The London installation will include one of the IMax VR experience centres. (The IMax VR Experience is Tested)