AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. on Monday detailed changes coming to its theaters, such as accepting bitcoin, that are aimed at appealing to its army of Reddit investors.
Chief Executive Adam Aron used the company’s earnings call, which is typically little more than a staid recitation of quarterly finances, to engender goodwill with his new shareholder base, a collection of thousands of meme-stock enthusiasts who have boosted AMC shares to record levels.
Over the more than hourlong call, Mr. Aron took questions from nearly a dozen retail investors—and one from a Wall Street analyst. The questions ranged from the viability of drive-in theaters (“a bad economic idea”) to whether the company would ever partner with fellow meme-stock company GameStop to bring gaming entertainment to AMC auditoriums (“We’re on the case.”).
Mr. Aron also announced the company would start accepting bitcoin at U.S. locations by the end of the year, citing the investor community’s enthusiasm for cryptocurrency, and said AMC was opening new locations thanks to the bullish support of his supporters.
It was a case study in the surreal and unprecedented year AMC has had. Last year, lockdowns and capacity restrictions drove the theater chain to the brink of bankruptcy. Now, AMC is “on the offensive,” Mr. Aron said, buoyed by the retail investor enthusiasm and a halting return to moviegoing around the world. AMC’s revenue tripled in the June quarter from the year’s first three months.