Why watch a movie when you can watch your corporate meeting with your bare hands?


Cinema attendance is down, thanks in large part to the pandemic, but channels like AMC still need to make some money. Whether meme stocks isn’t a reliable business plan, why not find another use for a giant hall with a giant screen and plenty of seats?

In partnership with Zoom, AMC Theaters will launch a product called Zoom Rooms Next year. Basically, you go to the cinema to join a Zoom meeting with your company. Yes, you have to go to the cinema only to join a meeting with your colleagues across the country, who are also in an AMC cinema. If your business isn’t cash-strapped, you might even get some free popcorn.

These theatres, which range between 75 and 150 seats, will be available for reservation for blocks of three hours.

“AMC has an abundance of attractive theaters in central locations in town after town after town, each with ample seating capacity, especially during the daytime on weekdays when most meetings are held,” said the CEO of ‘AMC Theatres, Adam Aron. “Zoom Rooms at AMC expands our reach as we can now also participate in the multi-billion market [dollar] market for corporate and other meetings.

While the idea of ​​someone sitting alone in a movie theater on a Zoom call is fun, that’s not what’s happening here. This technology is supposed to connect groups of people in different places – so, for example, a New York-based team could meet in one theater to catch up with a Los Angeles-based team in another theater. But it’s still unclear how you can actually tell who’s speaking if you have dozens of people crammed into a theater. Movie theater popcorn aside, it seems like a technical nightmare to figure out how to run a meeting this way… and maybe working from home and sending your employees bags of non-perishable popcorn is an alternative. more simple.

“As hybrid working has become more common in the United States, Zoom Rooms at AMC will allow companies and other entities with decentralized workforces and customer bases to bring people from different markets together for events and meetings. consistent virtual and in-person experiences,” a press release from AMC Theaters reads.

It’s like someone put a handful of publicly traded companies in a hat, picked two at random, and challenged them to create some sort of new collaboration.

AMC failed during the pandemic as its core business was rendered moot by a once-in-a-lifetime disaster. But even if vaccines become widespread, people are not returning to the cinema as society hoped. Even though AMC’s quarterly revenue increased, the company still reported a quarterly loss this week. Meanwhile, Zoom is trying to expand its reach by add features such as email and calendar as its unprecedented growth slows.


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