Kinepolis acquires American cinema chain


Flanders’ cinema giant Kinepolis has made its entry into the United States, buying a chain of 10 multiplexes in the US state of Michigan

‘Expansion goals’

Kinepolis has purchased the American group MJR Digital Cinemas, thus opening up the US market to the Flemish cinema giant. The acquisition includes MJR’s 10 multiplexes, all located in the state of Michigan.

All MJR’s venues have between 10 and 20 cinemas. In 2018, there were a total of 6.2 million visitors for an annual turnover of just over €74 million. Kinepolis paid some €137 million for the chain.

All of the cinemas are equipped with 5.1 digital surround sound and two of the 10 venues include “Epic Experience” with 4K projection resolution combined with Dolby Atmos sound. And every cinema comes with recliner seating to allow viewers to put their feet up – a concept also very popular in Canada, where Kinepolis operates 44 cinemas since buying Landmark Cinemas in 2017.

“I am extremely proud that, following our investment in Canada, we have the chance to expand into the US,” said Kinepolis CEO Eddy Duquenne. “The successful takeover of Landmark Cinemas proved that we can implement our successful business strategy on another continent and time zone. The takeover of MJR is a perfect example of our expansion goals: Michigan borders Canada, the group runs exclusively multi- and megaplexes and the real estate is of good value. I am especially impressed by MJR’s enthusiasm to implement Kinepolis’ management vision and customer concepts in its cinemas.”

The Kinepolis group, with headquarters in Ghent, was founded in 1997 when two family-owned cinema groups merged. The Brussels Kinepolis is considered the world’s first megaplex. The chain is now present in seven European countries as well as Canada and the US.

Photo: An MJR cinema in Southgate, Michigan
©Courtesy Kinepolis