TORONTO, March 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — March 10, 2008 – IMAX Corporation (NASDAQ: IMAX; TSX: IMX) today announced an agreement with Giencourt Investments S.A., a member of the RACIMEC International Group (RACIMEC) to purchase and install 35 IMAX(R) Digital projection systems in Central and South America and the Caribbean over the next six years. The agreement marks the largest international theatre deal, and second largest overall theatre deal, in IMAX’s history, following on the heels of AMC’s 100-theatre North America deal announced in December.
Under the terms of the agreement, RACIMEC will provide an initial down payment and a firm commitment to install a minimum of 35 IMAX theatres with fixed payment dates and opening dates. RACIMEC plans to contribute the IMAX theatre systems to its partners – developers, exhibitors and other entertainment operators – for negotiated economic terms and work with them to identify the best locations based on market demographics and cultural trends, ultimately building a substantial network of IMAX(R) theatres throughout the region.
“This important partnership with RACIMEC will result in a robust network of IMAX theatres in South and Central America,” said IMAX Co-CEOs and Co-Chairmen Richard L. Gelfond and Bradley J. Wechsler. “RACIMEC is a well-respected business innovator, and we are thrilled to expand our relationship with them at this level. As the industry moves toward digital and developers as well as exhibitors seek new ways to attract moviegoers, we are confident that RACIMEC’s experience and expertise are an ideal match for increasing IMAX’s presence in this critical market.”
“Based on the growing network of successful IMAX theatres and the introduction of IMAX’s digital projection system, we believe this is a perfect time to aggressively develop the South and Central American and Caribbean markets, said Miguel Sfeir, President of RACIMEC International Group. “We want to capitalize on the momentum IMAX has with its pending digital projection system and its robust array of Hollywood content to bring the ultimate movie-going experience to consumers in this part of the world.”
In 2005, RACIMEC signed a deal to install three IMAX theatre systems into new entertainment retail developments in Chile and Venezuela. Two IMAX theatres are being built and developed in Santiago, Chile, in addition to one in Caracas, Venezuela, and all are expected to open by mid-2009.
The highly anticipated IMAX Digital projection system will further enhance The IMAX Experience(R) and help to drive profitability for studios, exhibitors and IMAX theatres by virtually eliminating the need for film prints, increasing program flexibility and ultimately increasing the number of movies shown on IMAX screens.
IMAX has already secured important parts of its film slate for 2008, 2009 and 2010 through agreements with major Hollywood studios including: The Spiderwick Chronicles (in theatres now), Shine A Light (April 4, 2008), Speed Racer (May 9, 2008), Kung Fu Panda (June 6, 2008), The Dark Knight (July 19, 2008), Under the Sea 3D (February 2009), Monsters vs. Aliens 3D (March 2009), Hubble 3D (working title, February 2010), How to Train Your Dragon 3D (March 2010), and Shrek Goes Forth 3D (May 2010).
About RACIMEC International Group ---------------------------------
Founded in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in August 1966, as one of the most prominent entertainment and public gaming companies in the world, developing gaming applications such as Lotto and Soccer Lottery, for various Latin American countries including Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Venezuela, Colombia and Paraguay. The RACIMEC International Group has reached outstanding success in various countries with its starring game KINO, a pre-printed ticket game with a real time live TV show, crossing over the 4 billion dollar barrier during the last decade. RACIMEC has been identified by the Lottery market as the creator of new standards in Game operation and safety in the different countries where it operates.
About IMAX Corporation
IMAX Corporation is one of the world’s leading digital entertainment and technology companies. The worldwide IMAX network is among the most important and successful theatrical distribution platforms for major event Hollywood films around the globe, with IMAX theatres delivering the world’s best cinematic presentations using proprietary IMAX, IMAX(R) 3D, and IMAX DMR technology. IMAX DMR is the Company’s groundbreaking digital remastering technology that allows it to digitally transform virtually any conventional motion picture into the unparalleled image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience. IMAX’s renowned projectors and new digital systems display crystal-clear images on the world’s biggest screens. The IMAX brand is recognized throughout the world for extraordinary and immersive entertainment experiences for consumers. As of September 30, 2007, there were 296 IMAX theatres operating in 40 countries.
IMAX(R), IMAX(R) 3D, IMAX DMR(R), IMAX MPX(R), and The IMAX Experience(R) are trademarks of IMAX Corporation. More information on the Company can be found at http://www.imax.com/.
This press release contains forward looking statements that are based on management’s assumptions and existing information and involve certain risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from future results expressed or implied by such forward looking statements. Important factors that could affect these statements include ongoing discussions with the SEC and OSC relating to their ongoing inquiries and the Company’s financial reporting and accounting, the timing of theatre system deliveries, the mix of theatre systems shipped, the timing of the recognition of revenues and expenses on film production and distribution agreements, the performance of films, the viability of new businesses and products, risks arising from potential material weaknesses in internal control over financial reporting and fluctuations in foreign currency and in the large format and general commercial exhibition market. These factors and other risks and uncertainties are discussed in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K/A for the year ended December 31, 2006, as well as the Company’s Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q/A and Form 10-Q.
CONTACT: Media: IMAX Corporation, New York, Sarah Gormley, (212)821-0155, [email protected]; Entertainment Media: Newman & Company, LosAngeles, Al Newman, (310) 278-1560, [email protected]; Investors: IntegratedCorporate Relations, Amanda Mullin, (203) 682-8243; Business Media: Sloane &Company, New York, Whit Clay, (212) 446-1864, [email protected]