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Cineworld Acquires Regal Cineworld Acquires Regal

Companies

Cineworld Acquires Regal to Become Second Largest Global Cinema Operator

 2 min read / 

The Story

Cineworld will buy US cinema chain Regal for $3.6bn, creating the second largest global cinema group, operating 9,500 screens across ten countries. The move allows Cineworld to move into the US, the largest cinema market worldwide. The acquisition comes during a slow year for cinemas as on-demand streaming services see revenues grow.

Source: PwC

Why It’s Important

As film-goers pick on-demand services over cinemas, being a “bigger player, you’ve got more negotiating power with the Hollywood studios”, says Berenberg analyst Owen Shirley. Rival AMC, the largest global cinema company, has acted on this sentiment. The industry leader acquired US chain Carmike Cinema and Odeon & UCI Cinemas in 2016, later purchasing Nordic Cinema Group in 2017.

Consolidation may also enable movie theatres to create a better cinema experience by providing reclining seats and expanding food and beverage options at lower average costs. By making cinema’s about more than just films, they can differentiate themselves from on-demand streaming services, gaining new customers.

The deal comes amid sector-wide threats from the likes of Amazon Prime and Netflix, who provide on-demand film streaming services to consumers. Last summer’s box office sales were the worst since 2006. Consolidation and enhancing the cinema experience may help the industry survive the threat of on-demand streaming services.

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Companies

H&M to Shut Stores as Quarterly Results Plunge

 2 min read / 

H&M Results

Fashion retailer H&M announced today that it will be shutting down more stores after it experienced its biggest drop in quarterly sales in at least a decade.

Although group sales rose by 4% over the year, fourth quarter sales shrank by 4% year-on-year, to 50.4bn kronor ($6bn), as fewer customers visited its stores. This was far below the retailer’s expectations. Shares in H&M have now hit their lowest level in eight years.

H&M plans to adapt to changes in the market by closing more stores and selling the brand through Chinese online platform Tmall. It aims to integrate its physical and digital stores more, and will give more details on their strategy changes at a meeting with investors on February 14.

The company said:

“The quarter was weak for the H&M brand’s physical stores, which were negatively affected by a continued challenging market situation with reduced footfall to stores due to the ongoing shift in the industry[…] In addition, there have been imbalances in parts of the H&M brand’s assortment composition.”

The company’s rival, Inditex, the owner of high street brand Zara, as well as Massimo Dutti, Bershka and Pull&Bear, has continually outperformed H&M, as it expands more into e-commerce. However, this week, the Spanish giant also reported a slowdown in sales in its third quarter but said sales improved again in November given the colder weather.

Keep reading |  2 min read

Companies

Snap Opens Online Studio

Snapchat Online Studio

The studio will enable brands to build adverts that individuals users can include in their own snaps.

Snapchat is adding another trick to its repertoire by allowing users to add branded animations to the existing arsenal of augmented reality lenses. This is not a wholly new innovation as advertisers can already sponsor lenses, although there is a hefty minimum spend of $300,000 and a current need to work closely with Snap’s design team. However, the new studio will enable advertisers to create their own adverts, which will then need to be accepted by Snap before they are given the green light. The move is part of Snap’s wider efforts to diversify their revenue streams.

Keep reading |  1 min read

Asia

Japan Is Behind Bitcoin’s Rise

Japan Bitcoin

Deutsche Bank released a research note saying that Japanese investors account for bitcoin’s meteoric rise.

Deutsche Bank analysts have said they believe that individual Japanese foreign-exchange (FX) traders are instead moving towards leveraged cryptocurrency trading in the search for astronomical returns. Already, Japan makes up 50% of the world’s leveraged FX trading and Nikkei recently said that 40% of cryptocurrency trading was denominated in yen throughout October and November. Evidently, the Japanese are growing tired of years of ultra-low interest rates and are turning to the blockchain to boost their savings.

Keep reading |  1 min read

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