AMC Entertainment Holdings (AMC) unveiled its fourth quarter 2014 financials on Tuesday afternoon as the stock markets closed, reporting earnings of $0.30 per share (EPS) on $712.2 million in revenue.
The nation’s second-largest exhibitor’s performance exceeded Wall Street’s projections. According to Yahoo Finance, the consensus estimate predicted Q4 earnings would be around $0.21 per share on revenue of $712 million. Zack’s had forecasted an EPS of three pennies less.
The revenue performance is flat year-over-year; earnings from continuing operations was $29.8 million, a drop from $255.6 million a year ago as a result of a large tax benefit.
The quarterly performance was a record for AMC when looking at two markers: earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, which drew $140.1 million, and also with food and beverage sales per patron averaging $4.46.
AMC CEO Gerry Lopez noted the theater chain’s upgrades as a source of its Q4 success in the face of a “sluggish box office” and a “lackluster film slate.”
“The momentum we have been building since our IPO continued in the fourth quarter, in spite of a lackluster film slate,” Gerry Lopez, AMC president and chief executive officer said.
“Being a leader in guest experience is fun, and it works for us, our customers and our shareholders. Our relentless innovation and implementation of our five strategic initiatives is leading the revolution to change how America thinks about a trip to the movies. By focusing on the guest experience, we successfully mitigated the impact of a sluggish box office in the fourth quarter and delivered a company record of $4.46 in food and beverage revenues per patron, a 13.5% increase over the same quarter a year ago. Likewise in the fourth quarter, comfort and convenience continued to resonate with our guests, as our 53 reseated theatres provided a strong 13.8% increase in admissions revenues per screen compared to a year ago, which compares to a 4.3% industry decline over the same period.”
The Box Office is currently up over 10 percent compared to the same period in 2014 on the power of blockbuster movies like “American Sniper,” “SpongeBob Movie,” and “Fifty Shades of Grey.”