(May 14, 2003 – London) - SBC International Cinemas, the developer and operator of state-of-the-art-cinemas, today announced its acquisition of the Warner Village Cinema chain in the UK. The purchase of 36 Warner Village sites nationwide boosts its number of multiplex cinemas from 6 to 42 with a total of 383 screens. The deal involves the creation of an exciting new company called Vue (pronounced “View”), the new circuit will be completely rebranded over the next 6 months as Vue [logo available]. The new Vue cinema circuit immediately becomes the second largest in the country in terms of box office and the largest multiplex operator in the UK. Boston Ventures, which founded SBC in 1998, is providing significant additional funding for the transaction and has been joined as equal partners by Clarity Partners and Legal & General Ventures. CIBC World Markets provided the debt financing for the acquisition. J.Timothy Richards, President & CEO of Vue said: "Warner Village did a great job in constructing a very high quality portfolio of multiplex cinemas. We will continue to expand and enhance this platform to ensure that we have the leading, most modern and best equipped cinema circuit in the UK. The Vue brand will become synonymous with the best screens, the best sound and the best seating, to create the best possible cinematic experience. We will make sure this appeals to everyone by offering a greater variety and diverse range of films." Barry Baker, Chairman of Vue said: “We are excited to back Tim and his management team in buying these high quality assets, backed by experienced media and leisure investors who are committed to the growth of this company and to its mission to deliver the best cinematic experience to consumers of all ages throughout the UK.” “Warner Village is the most modern cinema circuit in the UK and we look to innovate further and build on this very strong base. With cinema attendance expected to rise in the UK year on year, we look forward to exceptional growth for Vue Cinemas." Millard Ochs, President, Warner Bros. International Cinemas said: “We are proud of the market-leading circuit we’ve built in the UK and are confident that under Vue’s experienced management team, the business will grow from strength to strength. Selling our interest at this time enables us to further our strategy of seeding new markets.” Boston Ventures (www.bostonventures.com) 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’ Partners and Principals are accomplished and experienced professionals who have a diverse and complementary range of skills and a broad network of domestic and international relationships. The existing Boston Ventures Fund VI partnership has attracted leading U.S. institutions and individuals from 16 countries. Some of their 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. Barry Baker, General Partner of Boston Ventures has a strong entertainment background including President and COO of USAi the formal parent company of USA Networks, USA Studios, USA Films and Ticketmaster. 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. Legal & General Ventures (www.legalandgeneralventures.com) Legal & General Ventures (“LGV”) is one of Europe’s leading private equity firms, with offices in London and Paris. 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 €75 million. Leisure is an important sector for LGV, where it has led or jointly-led deals totalling in excess of €5bn in value since September 2000, including Bourne Leisure, the leading UK caravan park operator that acquired Rank’s Holiday Division, Moliflor Loisirs, the French casino operator and the Unique Pub Company and Voyager Pub Group. Other sectors where LGV makes investments include consumer products, support services and healthcare.
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