Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Low Graphics

Monday, October 18, 1999 Published at 12:30 GMT 13:30 UK

Business: The Company File

Virgin sells cinemas

Money will be reinvested in the Megastore chain

Richard Branson's Virgin Group has sold its UK and Irish cinema chain to French film company UGC for £215m.

The money raised by the sale will be used to expand Virgin's Megastore music and computer software chains in the US and Asia, and to develop e-commerce projects.

Virgin will hold on to its cinemas in Japan and the US.

The 300 Virgin cinemas in the UK and Ireland will be rebranded as UGC cinemas within six to eight months, a spokesman said.

UGC, which is backed by French media giant Vivendi, has also agreed to a £17m contract to sell Virgin Cola products at the cinemas for "several years".

Virgin said it was negotiating to have its drinks sold in other cinemas across Europe.

Virgin shortlisted six potential buyers for its cinemas last week.

The group bought the screens from the Metro Goldwyn Mayer film studio four years ago.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

The Company File Contents

Relevant Stories

20 Aug 98 | The Company File
Virgin Territory

Internet Links

Virgin Group

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

In this section

Microsoft trial mediator welcomed

Vodafone takeover battle heats up

Christmas turkey strike vote

NatWest bid timetable frozen

France faces EU action over electricity

Pace enters US cable heartland

Mannesmann fights back

Storehouse splits up Mothercare and Bhs

The rapid rise of Vodafone

The hidden shopping bills

Europe's top net stock

Safeway faces cash demand probe

Mitchell intervenes to help shipyard

New factory creates 500 jobs

Drugs company announces 300 jobs

BT speeds internet access

ICL creates 1,000 UK jobs

National Power splits in two

NTT to slash workforce

Scoot links up with Vivendi

New freedom for Post Office

Insolvent firms to get breathing space

Airtours profits jump 12%

Freeserve shares surge

LVMH buys UK auction house

Rover - a car firm's troubles