by Gráinne Connolly
The Movie House in Belfast's City Centre is to close at the end of May.
The Dublin Road site at Bankmore Square has been sold to 'Kainos' a provider of digital services and platforms.
Michael McAdam, the cinema's Managing Director says, "We’ve been trading at Dublin Road for 12 years but recently we’ve seen a big shift in cinema attendance out of Belfast city centre to suburban cinemas, which offer free parking.
“It was a very difficult decision whether to sell or reinvest in the site.
"It is with a heavy heart that we decided on the latter and we wish Kainos every success with the redevelopment of the site for their new headquarters.
“Dublin Road Movie House is due to close at the end of May and we hope to be in a position to offer jobs to the 33 full and part time staff members at our other cinemas at that time.
"We are a small, family owned business and would like to thank our customers who have supported us over the years and hope to welcome them at our other cinemas.”
Meanwhile, Kainos will be transforming the site for it's new Belfast headquarters.
The firm has planning permission for a replacement 250,000 square foot Grace A office building but will be submitting a revised planning application.
CEO of Kainos, Brendan Mooney said: “Our people remain central to everything we do and we want to ensure that our staff work in the best environment possible, and Bankmore Square allows us the opportunity to create a superb, modern and innovative office for our people.
“As well as the additional capacity that the office will bring, this investment, and the location of our new HQ, signals our commitment to retaining and attracting the best staff.
"We remain focused on providing exceptional careers and working conditions for all at Kainos and hope to close this transaction soon.”
Kainos currently employs more than 1,400 people across 12 offices in Europe, the US and Canada.
It's on course to achieve its ninth consecutive year of growth in revenue and staff numbers.
Kainos plans to move in to Banmore Square in Spring 2021.