It seems to me that the smaller chains will struggle as the larger chains like Regal and others improve operations efficiencies and technology. What smaller chains are potential buyout candidates for Regal in the future and why?
I'm very connected to the movie theater audience experience, since I've spent nearly every day of my life for more than 15 years now in a seat in some movie theater, someplace in the world. It's what I do and because I pay for my seats and enjoy film going as an interest, not a profession, I think it gives me a unique perspective on commercial exhibition venues, their operators and most aspects of their business models both here in the U.S. and abroad. I do participate in a few movie incentives like Regal's and other exhibitors' movie watcher clubs, and due to the enormous expense of the cost of festival travel alone, I take advantage of the national MoviePass, pay one price beta, and corporate ticketing purchases where ever practical. What I see is an industry in transition and flux. Progress is muddied by unrealistic, often completely impractical business models. I could probably write a book on this subject but in a nutshell, I think the industry leaders, Regal/UA, AMC, Cinemark/Century, and niche peripherals like IMAX, will endure over time but not without transforming they way do business today. It's all about putting butts in the seats and that's driven by content. What the players are missing, predominantly, is the opportunity to exploit their captive audiences, not just when they're in those seats, but on the way in and on the way out, before they arrive and after they leave. The behemoths of the exhibition industry simple are too disconnected from their customers right now but they'll come around once the old guard gives way to fresh blood, youth who'll bring a contemporary application to the dated model. Meantime, look for Regal to dominate. The recent AMC IPO was little more than slight of hand and they're toying with progress, not actually progressing. Content and exploitation of its branding will drive future revenue, not bars, glorified overpriced fast food quality, dining or absurdly priced concessions. As for an aquisition target: Carmike.