As has been widely reported, shares of AMC Entertainment Holdings jumped more than 18 percent this week, set for the company’s biggest gain in a month, after sources said Amazon was looking to buy the theatre chain.
An Amazon executive who declined to give his name because he wasn’t authorized to speak for the company said the e-commerce giant views a potential acquisition of the Leawood, Kansas-based exhibitor as a means of obtaining brick-and-mortar outlets that could be used to promote Amazon Prime movies in addition to cross-selling other Amazon services through the distribution hubs.
Some reports emphasized that discussions are in the early stages. It remains unclear whether Amazon will make an offer to buy the chain. Amazon may wait for AMC’s stock to decline or for the company to enter bankruptcy so it could be purchased at a discount.
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has reportedly dispatched his investment advisers and top entertainment chiefs to explore the acquisition plans.
AMC did not immediately respond to several requests for comment, while Amazon declined to comment.
Last year Amazon last year closed an $8.5 billion deal to acquire MGM, the studio that delivered several blockbuster franchises including Rocky and James Bond.
AMC’s shares, which posted a 12-fold jump in 2021 in a Reddit-fueled surge, have gained about 11 percent this year. AMC, the world’s largest exhibitor, owns nearly 600 movie theatres in North America, Europe, and the Middle East.