Cinemark is the largest movie theater company in the United States. They are ubiquitous in terms of theaters, with about 4,500 screens in 1,300 theaters across the country. This should be a profitable business for any company; however, on November 10th of 2015, del rio cinemark filed for bankruptcy protection from creditors. With thousands of employees and millions of customers who were owed chunks of money from canceled credit cards and gift certificates, this was a big problem for their bottom line. But two days later on November 12th, Cinemark filed an 11-point plan to remedy this major concern.

1. Canceled Amex

Cinemark’s first priority was to cancel all of their accounts on American Express, which totaled over $40 million dollars. They did not have enough money to pay back this debt, so they had a bail-out package arranged with the power of bankruptcy. Once the Amex was canceled, Cinemark was able to turn around and request that the rest of their debts be refunded. Within two weeks, these debts were paid in full as well.

2. The Best Movies in Town

When you’ve got a sick list that includes every movie from Star Wars Episode 7 up through Star Wars Episode 9 , some people will wonder why they even bother showing movies at all. When you’re Cinemark, the answer to that question is simple—to make money. By keeping up with the latest and greatest releases, you can continue to reel in customers who are looking for the biggest bang for their buck.

3. New Box Office System to Cut Costs

Rather than spending extra money on expensive software which would have been extraordinarily difficult to install on their thousands of individual ticket windows, Cinemark invested a relatively small amount of cash in what they called “the best box office system available.” This new software was designed to manage many individual ticket sales at once, making it much easier for their employees to serve customers quickly and efficiently without wasting any time or energy.

4. Tech-Savvy Employees

Because there are so many different systems at play in the movie theater business, Cinemark brought in tech nerds for a solid month to train their employees on all of these new systems—from how to use the new box office software to work faster, to which computers customers were allowed to use without purchasing a ticket. The end result was a game-changing operation that ran much more smoothly than they’d anticipated—no more confusion or lost customers!

5. Better Customer Service

The best way for Cinemark to win back customers was good old customer service. Rather than having a box office waiting line that wrapped around the entire building and out onto the sidewalk, they installed an entirely new system which alleviated this problem. This meant that customers lined up much more quickly, and staff could handle them more efficiently. As a result, Cinemark’s customer service rating jumped from 2.5 stars to 4.0 stars on Facebook, giving them a competitive edge over other companies in their field.

6. Better Gift Cards

Another way Cinemark improved customer service was by replacing all of their gift cards with a new program called iCARD . Customers were able to access their gift cards more easily, and Cinemark saved money on printing, shipping and handling.

7. New Credit Card System

Cinemark replaced their entire credit card system with a digitized version called Flash Pass which could be used seamlessly on their touch-screen ticketing kiosks. This software also replaced their old cash registers, making it that much easier for customers to purchase tickets and concessions without being confused by outdated technology or out of date employees.

8. New Streaming Service

With all of the new technology at play in the movie industry these days, Cinemark wanted to give its customers as many options as possible when they went to the movies. They partnered with a company called Xumo to create a new streaming program that would allow consumers to stream new releases for free (or for a fee of their choosing) through their movie theater’s TV screen. This was an incredible perk which gave Cinemark a competitive edge over other companies in the movie industry—who could beat free movies?

9. Redesigned Interior

The final change made by Cinemark was to redesign the interior of their theaters and replace the uncomfortable, worn-out seating with brand-new leather recliners . Customers were incredibly excited about this change, and even though it cost a pretty penny, it was ultimately worth it for them.

10. More Pictures

Cinemark spent a little extra money to purchase new infra-red sensors, which allowed their employees to take pictures of customers throughout the movie, making them feel like celebrities as they sat on their brand-new recliners. These pictures were used for advertising purposes, but also allowed customers to have an emotionally positive experience at Cinemark’s theater.


Cinemark’s new financial plan was incredibly effective. Within only two weeks, they had canceled their Amex debt in full, refunded all of the money that had been owed by all of their customers on gift certificates and credit cards, and had updated all of their equipment and software to make it run more smoothly than ever before. They also stopped losing money on Star Wars , giving them a competitive advantage over other companies in the movie industry. 


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