By Erich Schwartzel
AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. agreed to buy Carmike Cinemas Inc. in a deal that would make a Chinese-owned company the largest movie-theater operator in the U.S.
AMC /quotes/zigman/21316533/composite AMC +4.02% will pay $30 a share for Carmike for a total payout of $1.1 billion, including the assumption of some Carmike debt, the companies said Thursday. The price is a nearly 20% premium to Carmike’s closing share price of $25.11 on Nasdaq.
The deal would also make AMC the world’s largest movie-theater operator.
AMC was purchased in 2012 by China’s Dalian Wanda Group Corp. for $2.6 billion. AMC’s 5,425 screens are concentrated in urban locations, while Carmike’s roughly 2,954 screens tend to be in more suburban and rural areas.