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Cineplex Inc. says it’s delaying the release of its first-quarter financial results as it focuses on the business impact of COVID-19.

The country’s largest movie theatre chain outlined plans to utilize temporary blanket relief provided by the Canadian Securities Administrators that gives the company an extension of up to 45 days for its filings.

Cineplex says it now plans to report its quarterly results for the period the ended March 31 by no later than June 29, which is a day before its $2.8-billion acquisition by Britain-based Cineworld PLC expires.

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The purchase of Cineplex is still subject to various conditions, including Investment Canada Act approval before the deadline.

Cineplex, like nearly all movie exhibitors, has faced a virtual shutdown since mid-March.

The company says it expects the COVID-19 pandemic will have a materially negative impact on its business for “at least” the first half of 2020. But the company noted that uncertainty around the extent of the viral spread, duration of severity and government restrictions make it impossible to quantify the financial hit.

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