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AMC Entertainment Raises $200 Million, but Needs $550 Million More

By Rich Duprey - Jan 6, 2021 at 10:37AM

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The theater owner is in a race against time to remain solvent.

The clock is ticking down on AMC Entertainment Holdings ( AMC -15.62% ). The movie theater operator has raised $200 million in capital, but still needs an additional $550 million if it wants to survive.

In an interview with CNBC Tuesday, CEO Adam Aron said: "We need to raise more, but we're working hard to do that and we've laid out a plan and a blueprint to get there. Whether we get there or not, only time will tell."

Two women eating in a theater

Image source: AMC Entertainment.

Doomsday clock is ticking

Time is not on AMC's side. The theater owner is trying to hang on until movie studios begin releasing films this year after their premieres were delayed by the coronavirus pandemic, leaving AMC with little to no revenue.

That left AMC in a deep hole as it took on massive amounts of debt from going on an acquisition spree, buying Carmike Cinemas and Odeon. It also took on debt to refurbish its theaters before the pandemic hit, outfitting them with luxury dine-in seating. AMC ended the third quarter with $5.8 billion in debt and $418 million in cash.

Last month it filed to sell 200 million shares of stock, then filed to sell 50 million more shares in a bid to raise cash. It was able to get one of its lenders to give it $100 million, but at the time needed $750 million more. Aron says the theater owner has raised a total of $200, but it's getting to crunch time.

"We do need to raise more money to get to the other side," Aron said. "Having said that, we've done that four times already, and that's our focus."

With some of AMC's lenders urging it to file for bankruptcy, it may be the theater owner has gone to the well one too many times.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis – even one of our own – helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.

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