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Regal theater chain's profit plunges 21%

February 08, 2008|From Bloomberg News

Regal Entertainment Group, the largest U.S. movie-theater operator, said Thursday that fourth-quarter profit fell 21% as attendance dropped.

Net income dropped to $23.2 million, or 15 cents a share, from $29.2 million, or 19 cents, a year earlier, the Knoxville, Tenn.-based company said. Sales fell 8.1% to $599.9 million.

Chief Executive Michael Campbell said industry box-office revenue declined 4.6% last quarter because of lower receipts from movies not among the top 10 in sales. Per person, the average ticket price increased 5.9% to $7.58.

"There was lack of depth in the film slate beyond the top 10 films," Campbell said, citing Box Office Mojo statistics.

Regal operates Regal Cinemas, United Artists Theatres and Edwards Theatres.

Regal rose 17 cents to $18.57.

The company's cash dividend of 30 cents a share, unchanged from the previous quarter, is payable March 20 to shareholders of record on March 10.

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