Media revenues, theatre attendance down for Cineplex in Q4

Patrons are spending more money at the box office and concessions, but there's been a slight decrease in ticket sales.

Cineplex’s latest quarterly report showed a slight lift in revenues, but net income was down, which it attributed directly to declining theatre attendance.

The entertainment company says attendance is down 3.2% year-over-year. Despite that, box office revenues per patron were up ($10.46 per person, a lift of 1.8%), along with concession revenues ($6.53 per person, up 3.8%). Total revenue came to $428.2 million, which was up just slightly from the $428.3 million it brought in for Q4 2017.

The company attributed part of the decrease in attendance this quarter due to the comparatively high results in Q4 2017 driven by Star Wars: The Last Jedi. That quarter in 2017 was also a record for media revenues, according to the company, which resulted in a 5.4% decrease in media revenues in this quarter ($58.2 million). Besides lower theatre advertising revenue, Cineplex confirmed that digital media project installation, a key component of its place-based advertising business, was down year-over-year as well.

Amusement revenues increased 8.5% ($53.5 million), which Cineplex attributed largely to The Rec Room’s performance (it pulled in $17.9 million with a store-level margin of 22%).

Revenue from Cineplex’s premium products – which include higher-ticket items like VIP Cinemas, IMAX, 3D and the immersive 4DX theatres – took a smaller share of box office earnings. Premium products now represent 44.6% of box office revenues, down from 45.7%. Cineplex recently signed an agreement with 4DX to open another 13 locations across the country.

Net income came to $27.2 million, down from $28.8 million in the same quarter for 2017.

For the full year, revenue was up 3.8% ($1.6 billion) and net income up 9.4% ($7.7 million).