City Screen Group, the UK’s leading independent cinema operator which trades as Picturehouse cinemas (“Picturehouse“), has been acquired by Cineworld Group Plc (“Cineworld“) for £47,300,000 in cash.
Marriott Harrison LLP advised Picturehouse and the sellers on the sale, working closely with one of the founder directors, Lyn Goleby, and the highly experienced management team, who will continue to run Picturehouse as a separate entity within Cineworld.
Founded in 1989 by Lyn Goleby and Tony Jones, Picturehouse has developed a portfolio of 21 city-centre cinemas screening predominantly art-house, independent and foreign-language films and catering for an older audience with its tailored programming, and on-site cafes and bars. The acquisition will add material value to Picturehouse providing scope to expand its existing portfolio by adding 10 more pipeline sites in locations throughout the United Kingdom.
Commenting on the acquisition, Stephen Wiener, Chief Executive Officer of Cineworld said: “We are delighted to welcome Picturehouse to the Cineworld Group. This acquisition gives us an opportunity to accelerate growth by reaching new audiences in a high value and high growth segment of the UK cinema market. We recognise that Picturehouse is valued by its customers and we look forward to supporting the business through the next phase of its development.”
Lyn Goleby added: “The opportunity to be part of a public company is great news for Picturehouse and our customers. We are known for our high quality city centre cinemas and our distinctive, wide-ranging programming. The unique character of Picturehouse cinemas will remain and our team will continue to bring the widest range of film to customers. The acquisition by Cineworld will accelerate the development of further Picturehouse cinemas around the country.”
Jon Sweet (Corporate partner) led the Marriott Harrison LLP team, comprising Bob Cordran (Employment partner) and associates Fran Spooner and David Strong.