Cineworld swung to a huge annual loss as the movie house chain felt the full impact of closures during the Covid-19 pandemic and warned any tightening of restrictions would force it to raise extra cash.
The company on Thursday reported a pre-tax loss of £3bn, compared with a profit of $212m a year earlier as revenue collapsed to $852m from $4.3bn in 2019. Cineworld earlier this week said it planned to re-open US cinemas on April 2.
“There can be no certainty as to the future impact of Covid-19 on the group. Governments strengthening of restrictions on social gathering may lead to closure of cinemas or studios delaying movie releases. This would have a negative impact on the Group’s financial performance and likely require the need to raise additional liquidity,” Cineworld said.
It added that it expected strong pent-up demand for affordable out-of-home entertainment post re-opening due to the pandemic “as indicated by the theatrical industry performing well in re-opened markets such as China, Japan and Australia”.