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China's Wanda Group to buy AMC Entertainment for $2.6 bn

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MUMBAI: Hollywood is attacting investments from China while opening up its own market in a limited way to the western movie world.

China-based Dalian Wanda Group has agreed to buy AMC Entertainment, the second largest movie theatre chain in North Amierica, for $2.6 billion.

Wanda, located in Beijing, intends to also invest up to $500 million in AMC strategic and operating initiatives over time as it aims to create the world?s largest cinema theatre chain.

The move comes after a line of investments Wanda has made in the entertainment sector since 2005. "This acquisition will help make Wanda a truly global cinema owner," said Wanda chairman and president Wang Jianlin in a statement. ?We share with AMC a passion for the growth of the worldwide movie industry."

The transaction is pending closing conditions and regulatory approval from the US and China. ?With Wanda as its partner, AMC will continue to seek out new ways to expand and invest in the movie-going experience,? AMC CEO and President Gerry Lopez said in a statement.

The Wanda group has more than $1.6 billion invested in entertainment and cultural activities.

AMC, headquartered in Kansas City, employs about 18,500 people and owns 346 theatres.

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