Blockbusters including Batman v Superman and Dead Pool helped one of the cinema firms owned by the Irish Ward family to boost profits by 33%.
The new accounts filed by Irish Multiplex Cinemas Ltd show the business posted a profit of €1.28m last year, up from the €965,287 it posted in the previous year.
The firm is one of the Irish cinema firms operated by the Ward family who own the Savoy cinema in Dublin, as well as multiplexes in Dun Laoghaire, Athlone, Dundalk, Killarney and Ballymena.
The Savoy hosts many movie premieres in Ireland. It paid an unchanged dividend of €207,000.
The firm’s accumulated profits increased from almost €8m to over €9.1m.
Based on population, Ireland, with France, had the highest cinema attendances in Europe last year, at 3.3 visits a year.
The Ward business was also helped last year by the largest grossing movies of the year including Bridget Jones’s Baby at €4.1m; Finding Dory €3.52m; The Secret Life of Pets €3.4m; The Jungle Book €3.15m; Batman v Superman at €2.8m; and Captain America at €2.4m.
The firm’s cash fell from €2.7m to €990,994. The number of staff increased from 42 to 44, including 34 people in operations and 10 staff working in administration. Staff costs increased from €811,708 to €832,053.
Before going their separate ways in 2013, the Ward and Anderson families controlled about half of the Irish cinema distribution market between them.
Leo Ward and Kevin Anderson, who were half-brothers, first went into business together in the 1940s.
The extended families fell out over plans to open a new cinema in Dublin.
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