Cineworld chain grows market share

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CINEWORLD is pinning its hopes for Christmas on blockbuster films such as The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug and Hunger Games: Catching Fire – starring Jennifer Lawrence – as it tries to match the “phenomenal success” of last year’s James Bond outing, Skyfall.

In a trading update ahead of its half-year results, the Aim-quoted cinema operator yesterday posted a 10.4 per cent rise in its box office takings for the first six months of the year, boosted by higher tickets prices and cinema-goers spending more on ice-creams, popcorn and other “extras”.

Cineworld, which grew its market share to 25.2 per cent from 24.7 per cent a year ago, said: “We expect the positive start to the year to continue into the third quarter, where there are weaker comparatives due to the impact of the Olympics on scheduling last year.

“By contrast there is a tougher fourth-quarter comparative due to the phenomenal success of Skyfall. The film line up during the second half of the year has strong 3D titles.”