Cineplex being acquired by U.K.-based Cineworld

Britain’s Cineworld announced a $2.8-billion Cdn takeover of Canada’s Cineplex Inc on Monday which would make it the largest cinema operator in North America.

Cineworld has offered to buy Toronto-based Cineplex for $34 per share, a premium of 42 per cent to its close on Friday.

Shares in Cineworld were up about 1.4 per cent in early trading.

The deal comes nearly two years after Cineworld bought U.S.-based Regal Cinemas.

It will add 165 cinemas and 1,695 screens to its global network of 9,498 screens across 786 sites.

“Our immediate post-acquisition objectives will be to combine Cineplex with our U.S. business,” Chairman Anthony Bloom said.

Cineworld said its largest shareholder, Global City Theatres B.V., has agreed to back the deal.

The company also said it will continue the refurbishment of the Regal chain in the United States.

Cineworld listed on the London Stock Exchange in 2007 and is part of U.K.’s midcap index.

Bank of America Securities, HSBC Bank and Goldman Sachs International acted as financial advisers.


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