Atom Tickets Inks Deal with Mark Cuban’s Landmark Theatres

Atom Tickets, the app-based paperless movie ticket platform May 15 announced a deal with Landmark Theatres, which is owned by Dallas Mavericks owner and “Shark Tank” star Mark Cuban.

The deal affords Atom Tickets –which is financially backed by Lionsgate and 20thCentury Fox Film – access to Landmark Theatre’s 53 theatres and 255 screens. The exhibitor ups Atom’s total reach to more than 20,000 screens across North America.

With exhibitors feeling the crunch from over-the-top video and alternative entertainment options, indie theaters such Landmark eye Atom Tickets as a means of putting consumers in seats.

Landmark recently inked a revenue-sharing deal with MoviePass, the controversial subscription-based ticket service enabling members daily access to one screening for a $9.95 monthly fee.

The free Atom app and website offer movie reviews, trailers and synopses to guide consumers about moviegoing options. Atom offers streamlined ordering of tickets and concessions from any Android or iOS phone. At the theater, users go directly to the ushers and concession counters, where they scan a QR code at tablet kiosks.

“We’re excited to partner with Atom Tickets as yet another way to provide the best moviegoing experience to our guests,” Cuban said in a statement.


Atom Tickets Enhances Concession Sales App

Atom Tickets, the online movie ticket service co-owned by Lionsgate, has launched an updated app enabling moviegoers to pre-order concessions and skip lines in theaters.

The concession feature, available in the Atom app, is aimed at helping theater owners capture incremental revenue at the snack counter. The company April 17 announced that Southern Theatres and Megaplex Theatres will join AMC Theatres, Regal Cinemas, Landmark Cinemas and Emagine Entertainment in offering Atom Tickets pre-order concessions feature to moviegoers.

Currently, the Atom app allows moviegoers to pre-order concessions at participating exhibitors at the time they purchase a movie ticket. With the new feature, moviegoers receive an alert on their smartphone as they near the theater or movie time.

A recent study by Atom Tickets found that 52% of moviegoing respondents cited long lines as the No. 1 reason for skipping concessions. The study also found that 50% of moviegoers would buy more often and buy more items if they could pre-order.

“When we drilled into the specifics of Atom users, we discovered that nearly three-quarters of [them] were already ordering pizza, sandwiches, coffee and more using an app, so this was an immediate area for us to focus on,” Matthew Bakal, co-founder of Atom Tickets, said in a statement.

Indeed, Dar Hackbarth, director of marketing at Southern Theatres, said the app helps innovate the moviegoing experience.

“With Atom, we are able to stay on the front edge of innovation to deliver a more enjoyable moviegoing experience to our patrons,” Hackbarth said.

Allison Checchi Upped to COO at Atom Tickets

Atom Tickets March 13 announced that industry veteran Allison Checchi has been promoted to chief operating officer (COO). Checchi was previously chief marketing officer.

In her new role, Checchi is responsible for the day-to-day management of all functional areas of the company, including marketing, product, and engineering. She is also responsible for managing the end-to-end programs of the operating plan.

Checchi spent nearly 12 years at Bain & Co., where she was a principal in Bain’s Technology, Media and Telecom practice with a primary emphasis on growth strategy. Checchi also served as chief marketing officer of YP (Yellow Pages), where she led all marketing and digital advertiser product management functions.

She holds a BS in Engineering Science and Economics from Vanderbilt University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

“[Checchi’s] dedication to operational excellence is exactly what Atom needs as we turn our focus to scaling our business,” co-founder Matthew Bakal said in a statement.

Atom Tickets, which includes financial backing from Lionsgate, was founded in 2014 by Bakal, Ameesh Paleja, and Geoff Shaevitz. All founders are actively involved as board members.



Starz Names Ameesh Paleja to Chief Technology Officer Position

Multichannel distributor Starz March 9 announced the hiring of Ameesh Paleja as chief technology officer. Paleja joins Starz from Atom Tickets, where he was co-founder and CEO since 2014. Paleja will continue serving on Atom Ticket’s board and as an advisor and head of innovation.

Lionsgate owns Starz and is an investor in Atom Tickets.

Paleja began his career at Microsoft in 2001, then moved to Amazon in 2003. While at Amazon, he focused on building software and services allowing the company to sell digital goods. Paleja helped launch Prime Instant Video, Amazon’s Appstore, Cloud Drive, and the Kindle product line. He then became the founding employee of Amazon’s R&D facilities in Southern California, where he oversaw more than 550 employees.

“Ameesh is a visionary and world-class technologist whose substantial experience with digital distribution platforms will deepen our brands’ connection with consumers and provide audiences the highest quality entertainment possible,” said COO Jeffrey Hirsch, to whom Paleja reports in Starz’s Englewood, Colo., office.

Atom Tickets Gets Additional $60M Funding

Theatrical moviegoers may be decreasing, but the battle to sell them tickets online is escalating.

Atom Tickets March 8 announced it secured more than $60 million in new capital from Fidelity Management & Research Co. – less than two years after raising $50 million in funding from Lionsgate, The Walt Disney Co. and Twentieth Century Fox Film, all of whom contributed to the new investment.

The funding comes as Atom competes with NBC Universal-owned Fandango and subscription ticket service, MoviePass, to establish market share as gatekeepers in the margin-challenged theatrical business.

Launched in 2016, the Atom Tickets app tripled its users and ticket sales in one year. The service features advance ticket purchasing, the ability to invite friends and sit together while paying separately and concessions ordering.

In the last year, Atom Tickets formed an advisory board with Steven Spielberg, J.J. Abrams, and Tyler Perry, among others. It teamed with T-Mobile and Chase Pay offering special ticketing offers, making purchasing tickets faster and more social.

Atom also partnered with studios to better connect them with moviegoers using proprietary data and targeting capabilities on Atom and across the web.

Exhibitor partners include AMC Theaters, Regal Cinemas, Southern Theatres, Showcase Cinemas, B&B Theatres and online movie database, IMDb.

“We’re pleased to participate in this latest round of financing for Atom Tickets, which has demonstrated enormous traction with exhibition partners, studios, and moviegoers during the past year,” Michael Burns, vice chairman at Lionsgate, said in a statement.