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DENVER-The consolidated revenues of United Artists Theater Co. in the second quarter amounted to $128.5 million compared with $138.4 million in the same time period in 2000. In the first half of the year, its revenues fell to $256.9 million compared with $263.8 million in 2000. However, it reports good news as far as EBITDA, which rose almost 20% to $16.3 million. A year ago, its second-quarter EBITDA was $13.6 million. And its EBITDA as a percent of revenues rose by 9.8%.

EBITDA in the second half of the year increased 63%, rising to $33.6 million compared with $20.6 million in 2000. The EDITDA margin for 2001 increased to 13.1% from 7.8%. Exclusive of extraordinary items, mostly related to the company’s Chapter 11 reorganization, the company reported positive net earnings for the first six months of 2001. That has not happened in several years. Net earnings before extraordinary gains related to the reorganization were $300,000, compared to a $40.7 million loss a year ago. The company filed for reorganization on Sept. 5 and emerged on March 2, 20001. The revenue declines were related to closing of many under-performing theaters while in bankruptcy. With fewer theaters, revenues were expected to drop.

EBITDA, however, benefited from a more favorable release of films in the beginning of 2001, compared with the same period in 2000. ”I am especially pleased by the 18% increase in year-to-date admission revenue per average screen, and the significant increase in the company’s year-to-date EBITDA and EBITDA margins,” says Kurt Hall, president and CEO of United Artists, a privately held firm controlled by Denver billionaire Philip Anschutz.

Hall thinks the future looks promising. ”Now that our reorganization is behind us, we have increased our efforts to defend and expand our key market positions,” he says. ”Since the completion of our reorganization in March, we have completed a stadium seating renovation at one of our theatres in the Philadelphia market, completed renovations at several smaller market theatres and have begun the renovation and expansion of our Sheepshead Bay theatre, one of our most successful theatres in the New York City market. With our low financial leverage and significantly improved liquidity and operating margins, we are very well positioned to defend and strengthen our key market positions and look for additional ways to improve our profitability.”

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