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UPDATE: AMC Entertainment to issue 44.4 million shares as investors opt to convert $600 million of convertible debt

AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. AMC, +301.21% said Thursday a group of investors including units of private-equity firm Silver Lake have opted to convert all $600 million of the cinema chain’s 2.95% convertible senior notes due 2026 into Class A common shares, at a conversion price of $13.51 a share. The stock closed Wednesday at $19.90, after being swept up in the[l: short squeeze in shares of videogame retailer GameStop Inc. GME, +134.84%, which has skyrocketed more than 1,600% in the past two-plus weeks amid support from investors on Reddit’s WallStreetBets message board. AMC said the conversion will result in the issuance of 44.4 million new shares. The conversion will reduce the company’s debt by $600 million. AMC shares rose 4.4% premarket immediately after the news was announced before reversing course to trade down 36%, reflecting that the move is dilutive. The stock has gained a stunning 839% in the year to date, despite the many challenges facing the world’s biggest cinema operator caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The S&P 500 SPX, -2.57% has fallen 0.4% in the year to date.

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