AMC Theatres on Tuesday said it will buy Starplex Cinemas for $172 million, adding 33 theaters with 346 screens in 12 states.
Leawood-based AMC, the nation’s second-largest movie theater chain, said the purchase will allow it to expand into new small and midsize markets where there is “little geographic overlap” with its existing business.
The all-cash transaction, which requires regulatory approval, is expected to be completed by the end of this year.
Starplex, based in Dallas, is privately held. Though it doesn’t have theaters in the Kansas City area, it owns movie houses in the Kansas cities of Hays, Pittsburg and Salina and in Springfield, Mo.
The company also owns screens in California, Connecticut, Illinois, Nebraska, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, Virginia and Washington.
“Starplex and AMC have a shared vision to provide a quality guest experience, and even more of our guests will now benefit from recliner (seats) and other great amenities,” Starplex chief executive Steve Holmes said in a statement.
AMC said the purchase will allow it to improve its balance between large-market theaters and small to midsize markets. The company said it also expects to be able to generate savings from the deal by combining functions such as human resources, accounting, finance and technology. AMC said it will take a one-time transaction-related charge.
When the deal is completed, AMC will operate about 380 theaters with 5,300 screens.