Liège (Belgium) and London (UK), 9 December 2016/ CinemaNext, the European specialist in cinema exhibitor services (Ymagis Group - ISIN: FR0011471291, TICKER: MAGIS), is pleased today to announce the signature of an agreement with the UK’s leading independently-owned cinema chain, Empire Cinemas, to oversee the projection & audio installations, field services and technical customer support for Empire’s entire network of 14 locations across Great Britain, representing a total of 127 screens, including two IMAX Cinemas.
The companies share a number of synergies - with Empire looking to achieve a lower cost for their technical requirements, and CinemaNext looking to continue to build their install, planned and reactive maintenance expertise to ensure the highest level of customer service and support in the UK.
“We are delighted with this new partnership with CinemaNext’s London team,” comments Justin Ribbons, Chief Executive of Empire Cinemas. "We have had an in-house engineering team for many years, but with the advent of digital and the technical changes that our industry has, and continues to have, it is more cost effective to have a good technical partner that can carry the cost of training, spare parts inventory, installations and, importantly, supporting our cinemas so that they continue to offer our customers the best possible cinematic experience.”
“The immediate result of this agreement with Empire Cinemas is the significant strengthening of our UK-based operations with the addition of six new highly-skilled and experienced engineers to our local team led by Jerry Murdoch (Country Manager, CinemaNext UK) and André Mort (now Technical Director, CinemaNext UK),” explains Till Cussmann, SVP CinemaNext. “It also increases our business opportunities and will demonstrate our top-notch services and cost benefits for Empire Cinemas and our other existing cinema customers across the UK.”
Empire Cinemas was founded in 2005 following the mergers of Odeon and UCI and Cineworld and UGC. The cinema chain took its name from the iconic Empire Leicester Square, which has been one of London’s most popular cinemas since it played host to the first moving images screened to a UK audience in 1896. It was Empire’s flagship until its sale to Cineworld in August 2016. Empire Cinemas will open a new 14-screen complex in February 2017 and another 10-screen complex is scheduled to open in early 2018. These new additions to the portfolio will increase Empire locations to 16 cinemas and 151 screens, helping to strengthen their position as the leading independent cinema operator in the UK.
CinemaNext is the largest cinema exhibition services company in Europe, providing smart, comprehensive solutions across the board, from projection equipment, audio systems, central systems, cinema outfitting, 3D projection systems & glasses, TMS, digital signage, screens to seating. Clients enjoy the highest level of reliability and lowest cost of ownership through our various services: consulting, design & project management, equipment sales and financing, installation, maintenance, support (NOC), online monitoring, spare and consumables, service agreements and supply chain & logistics. 9,000 screens have been installed by its technicians to date and 7,000 screens in Europe currently avail of service contracts.
ABOUT CINEMANEXT | YMAGIS GROUP
CinemaNext is the Ymagis Group’s business unit dedicated to exhibitor services. Founded in 2007 and managed by professionals from the motion picture and high-tech industries, Ymagis Group is a European leader in advanced digital technology services for the cinema industry. Through CinemaNext and Eclair, the Group provides smart and comprehensive solutions to movie exhibitors, distributors (feature films & event cinema), producers, rights holders, cinema/TV advertising networks, broadcasters, VOD/S-VOD platform operators and video publishers. Over the years, Ymagis Group has significantly grown its portfolio of solutions & services and further developed its geographic footprint in Europe with permanent offices in 20 countries. The company’s core business is structured around three main units: CinemaNext (exhibitor services: sales and field services, software solutions, customer service/NOC and consulting), Eclair (content services: post-production, theatrical delivery, digital distribution, versioning and accessibility, restoration and preservation) and Ymagis (VPF & financial services). A publicly-traded company listed on Euronext, Ymagis Group is headquartered in Paris (France) and counts close to 700 employees. For more information, please connect to http://www.ymagis.com, http://www.cinemanext.digital or http://www.eclair.digital
ABOUT EMPIRE CINEMAS
Empire Cinemas is the largest independently-owned cinema chain in the UK. Operating 127 screens in 14 cinemas across the United Kingdom, Empire Cinemas screens everything from mainstream blockbusters to art-house classics in quality cinemas, staffed by individuals who are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about film. 2016 has seen Empire Cinemas continuing to provide the best film-going experience to its customers. March saw the opening of a brand new IMAX screen in Swindon – Empire Cinema’s fifth IMAX instillation after IMAX screens opened at a number of sites including Great Park Birmingham in 2015. In October 2015, a new state of the art, seven-screen cinema was unveiled in Catterick, as part of the Princes Gate leisure development. In 2015, Empire Cinema’s opened its doors to 8 million customers, showing over 500 different movies across its screens. Empire Cinemas is also the home of alternative content through their Empire Extra programme, screening the latest productions from the worldly renowned Royal Opera House, National Theatre Live and English National Opera straight to cinemagoers. The community is at the core of Empire Cinemas, with money-saving schemes including Meerkat Movies, SAV£RDAY Tuesday, Parent and Baby, Last Chance To See Thursdays, Empire Jnrs and Empire Seniors helping to give every customer a unique cinema experience. For more information, visit www.empirecinemas.co.uk