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Premier Exhibitions 1Q profit up, attendance rises

ATLANTA (AP) -- Premier Exhibitions, known for its 'Bodies' shows and Titanic exhibit, posted a 9 percent jump in first-quarter net income as it held more events and operated on more days during the period.

The Atlanta company earned $1.2 million, or 2 cents per share, for the three months ended May 31. That compares with $1.1 million, or 2 cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose 19 percent to $11.5 million from $9.7 million.

Premier Exhibitions' stock added 7 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $2.54 in Thursday morning trading. Over the past year, the stock has traded in a range of $1.46 to $3.75.

The total number of exhibition days climbed 12.2 percent to 1,361, while the average attendance per exhibition days increased to 605 from 551 a year ago.

Also driving results was the acquisition of Arts and Exhibitions International LLC, whose exhibitions include King Tut II, Cleopatra, America I Am and Real Pirates. Premier said it realized $111,000 in AEI management fees during its first quarter.

However, average ticket prices slipped 7.6 percent to $15.06.

Premier Exhibitions has displayed artifacts from the Titanic in traveling shows worldwide, including a permanent exhibit in Las Vegas. RMS Titanic Inc., a division within the company, announced that it would auction the collection in response to shareholder wishes.

Premier Exhibitions Inc. said Wednesday that negotiations and due diligence is ongoing and that it won't have any updates related to the matter at this time.