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Sunday, December 19, 2021

The AMC Saga: The Best Hollywood Story of the Year


Being resurrected from the brink of bankruptcy was only the start of this entertainment saga.

More than 4 million retail investors betted billions on AMC's future as the entity was rocked and battered by COVID and content streamers.

Amassing on social media, these retail investors took AMC's shares price from $2.20 to $76.02 and the new 'crowd' investors ended up owning 80% of the company. Empowered by Robin Hood, Webull, and other online investment apps, that have made stock trading easy and cheap, the mob rescued the faltering movie house. 

Robin Hood founders: Vladimir Tenev and Baiju Phatt

Not guided by Wall Street's normal financial investment motives, these retail investors were moved by internet buzz. AMC and video game retailer Game Stop were 2021 'mob' favorites. Fancied a populist revolt against Wall Street take-over predators who had bet heavily on both companies' demise.

"It was the 99% against the 1%. I love the movies, we would go every week. I knew there was a bunch of people that would come together for this battle", stated Kathy Larsen, a 40-year-old bartender from Oceanside, CA. 

Larsen, and her mates, call themselves 'apes', a reference to the film 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes'. The apes made AMC their cause, and AMC CEO, Adam Aron, climbed on board. To appease the apes, AMC began accepting cryptocurrencies and hosting mixed martial arts tournaments.

$2 billion had been raised but Aron felt he would need double that to survive the impact of the pandemic but the new 'owners' shot down that idea. Led by several leaders, including Trey Collins, a 24-year-old Army officer, the apes told Aron to "forget about AMC's business fundamentals" and instead put trust in the ape collective.

Now, looking in from the outside, Wall Street analysts cited AMC's pandemic losses, a $5 billion debt load, and the changing consumers' viewing habits make AMC's performance outlook extremely dim.

Numbers don't lie, and AMC's share price currently stands at $29.12 (as of 12/18/21). The apes did allow AMC senior executives to become rich however as they unloaded their shares - to the tune of $80 million. 

Trey Collins and other ape influencers tell AMC mob investors to hold their shares - predicting the stock will soar again.

The apes vs. Wall Street, there can only be one winner. Who do you think will come out on top?

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