UPDATE 1-IMAX boosts Chinese presence with 8-theatre deal

Wed Jul 21, 2010 8:10am EDT

* Says deal with Guangzhou Jinyi Film & Television Group

* Says deal adds to a 4-theatre deal with Guangzhou Jinyi

* Says deal to raise IMAX theatres in China to 65 by 2014

July 21 (Reuters) - Giant-screen movie operator IMAX Corp (IMX.TO) signed a deal with China's Guangzhou Jinyi Film & Television Group Co to open eight IMAX theatres in the country.

The deal adds to the four IMAX theatres already contracted between the two parties, bringing the total number of theatres scheduled to be operating in China by 2014 to 65.

"Our Chinese network is scheduled to at least double in size over the next couple of years," said Chief Executive Richard Gelfond in a statement.

Under the deal, the first installation is scheduled to be completed during December, followed by another five in 2011, four in 2012, one in 2013 and one in 2014, the company said.

IMAX shares closed at C$13.97 Tuesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Gowri Jayakumar in Bangalore; Editing by Jarshad Kakkrakandy)

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