Imax praised as a ‘box office triumph’ as Benchmark boosts price target to $24

Benchmark raised its Imax Corp.

price target to $24 from $23 Monday, citing the company’s better-than-expected box office performance.

“IMAX’s global box office (GBO) for 3Q significantly exceeded our estimate, generating $347M, compared to our projected $237M,” wrote Benchmark analyst Mike Hickey, in a note released Monday. “The GBO achieved a remarkable 141% of its pre-pandemic performance for the same quarter, underlining the impressive ongoing recovery of IMAX.”

Hickey said that China could present further recovery potential in 2024, while domestic and international markets are projected to match or exceed their pre-pandemic box office benchmarks.

Related: Imax enjoyed best ever July box office, boosted by ‘Oppenheimer’

Last month the high-end movie theater operator announced that summer blockbuster “Oppenheimer” had reached $170 million in global box-office sales across the company’s network, boosted by its debut in China, making it the fifth-highest-grossing Imax release. In August, Imax said that it had enjoyed its best-ever July at the box office, boosted by the success of “Oppenheimer.”

“Oppenheimer,” which was shot with Imax cameras and directed by Christopher Nolan, was one of the major movie releases of the summer, along with Greta Gerwig’s “Barbie.” That movie, starring Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling, hit Imax for a limited engagement on Sept. 22, with additional post-credit footage.

Related: Imax shares rally after earnings beat, with more gains from ‘Oppenheimer’ still to come

Shares of Imax ended Monday’s session down 1.9% Monday, while the S&P 500 index
rose 0.6%.

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