Vue Entertainment Purchases Ster Century UK & Ireland
Vue Entertainment, the UK’s leading developer and operator of state-of-the-art-cinemas, today announced its acquisition of the Ster Century UK & Ireland circuit. The combined circuit will have 49 modern purpose built multiplexes with 496 screens.
Tim Richards, CEO of Vue said: “We are delighted to have acquired Ster Century’s UK and Ireland multiplex circuit. Their 7 cinemas are built to the highest specifications. All auditoriums have comfortable stadium seating and feature the latest Dolby digital surround sound and large wall-to-wall screens. These high quality cinemas perfectly complement Vue’s current circuit of 42 cinemas which is the most modern in the country. The expanded Vue circuit will have over 90% of its screens equipped with modern stadium seating, the highest proportion of any major circuit in the UK.
Because the cinemas have been well managed by Mike Ross (CEO – Ster Century) and Theo Fonternel (COO – Ster Century) together with their site teams; the transition to Vue will be made easier as it will also allow the acquired sites to cinemas to quickly take on and deliver Vue’s brand and offer which is to provide the best possible cinema experience for our guests delivered by friendly and knowledgeable people.
We are also looking forward to operating our first cinema in the busy Dublin market and are delighted we have acquired the top grossing cinema in the UK and Ireland, the Ster Century Liffey Valley multiplex.
Jonathan Scherer, Chairman of Ster Century UK and Ireland added, “The sale of our Company to Vue will place in good hands the circuit we have built into the 5th largest in the UK and Ireland. We are very proud of our teams’ performance since we bought the circuit in 2003 and wish all our employees even more success in the future. Being part of Vue allows them new opportunities to progress their careers in one of the UK’s leading operators of high quality cinemas’.
Barry Baker, Chairman of Vue said, “We are excited to back Tim and his management team in buying this high quality circuit. The deal is backed by experienced media and leisure investors Boston Ventures, Legal & General Ventures and Clarity Partners who are committed to the growth of this company and to its mission to deliver the best cinema going experience to people of all ages throughout the UK”.
The Ster Century Cinemas Purchased by Vue Entertainment
It is anticipated (subject to consents) that the rebranding of the cinemas will take 10-12 weeks to complete.
About Boston Ventures:
Boston Ventures Management, Inc. is a private equity firm that has been an active investor and financial partner to management teams in the media, entertainment, and communications sectors since 1983, earning the firm a franchise position in the private equity community. Boston Ventures’ Managing Directors are accomplished and experienced professionals who have a diverse and complementary range of skills and a broad network of domestic and international relationships. Some of Boston Ventures’ named investments in their 20 year history have included News Corporation, National Enquirer, River City Broadcasting, Six Flags Amusement Parks, Panavision and Motown Records as well as US and UK cinema complexes in their current and previous funds.
Clarity Partners (www.claritypartners.net)
Clarity Partners is a private equity investment firm based in Los Angeles, California, which invests exclusively in media, communications, and related technologies and services. The firm’s partners have extensive experience in successfully creating, investing in, managing, and financing companies at all stages of development. Clarity works with its portfolio companies’ management teams to establish or grow dynamic companies with leading positions in their target market segments. In addition to Vue, Clarity’s recent media investments include the creation of Impremedia, the leading Spanish language newspaper chain in the United States, and Oxygen, a successful cable television network targeted at women. Clarity’s current telecommunications portfolio includes: OpNext, a leader in the optical components market; MetroPCS, a fast growing provider of wireless telecommunications in a number of major US markets; and, Woosh Wirelss, a company offering broadband wireless services in New Zealand.
Legal & General Ventures (www.legalandgeneralventures.com)
Legal & General Ventures Limited (“LGV”) is one of the UK’s leading private equity firms. It is owned by Legal & General Group Plc. LGV’s investment focus is on backing highly motivated management teams in buyouts of well established businesses, typically with initial enterprise values in excess of £60 million.
Leisure is an important sector for LGV, where it has led or jointly-led deals totalling in excess of EUR5bn in value since September 2000. Deals have included Bourne Leisure, the leading UK caravan park operator that acquired Rank’s Holiday Division, the Unique Pub Company, health and fitness operators, The Club Company and Total Fitness and restaurant group, Tragus, which owns the Cafe Rouge and Bella Italia brands.. Other sectors where LGV makes investments include consumer products, support services and healthcare.
For more information, pictures, interviews from Vue Entertainment please contact:
T: +44 (0) 20 7291 6424
M: +44 (0) 7990 555 285
F: +44 (0) 20 7637 2626
For more information, pictures, interviews from Ster Century please contact:
+44 (0)7767 321 085