Cedar Fair faces a number of decisions under pressure by investors

Posted Sunday, January 23, 2011 11:10 PM | Contributed by Jeff

Cedar Fair Entertainment Company is nearing a crossroads as critical decisions loom. The company's board of directors is searching for someone to replace Dick Kinzel, 70, a long-respected amusement park operator who has served as Cedar Fair CEO since 1986. The board, meanwhile, is under pressure to hire a new chairman who has no previous ties to the company. The board is also being asked to increase cash payouts for investors.

Read more from The Sandusky Register.

Sunday, January 23, 2011 11:52 PM

How about they just reopen Geauga Lake? Please?

Monday, January 24, 2011 12:15 AM

There's nothing there to reopen.

Monday, January 24, 2011 1:09 AM

There are some interesting points in that article, mainly, that even after a new CEO and Chairman are found, Dick is still going to be on the board for a few more years.

Monday, January 24, 2011 10:36 AM

Kinzel alleges Raynor's ultimate goal is to merge Cedar Fair with the Six Flags amusement park chain. Six Flags filed for bankruptcy in June 2009 but left restructuring in May 2010.

I'd say this qualifies as an interesting point...

Monday, January 24, 2011 11:15 AM

Yeah, I don't really get that. That'd be a worse Idea then both companies have made up to this date under any regime, IMO. Does Q have any interest in Six Flags at this point?

Six Flags was already too big when they went into crisis. Part of the reason CF has issues now is becasue they gobbled up another chain and a single park. I wonder if that has any basis in fact or if it's just Kinzel trying to hold on to the positions he's being pushed out of.

Monday, January 24, 2011 12:53 PM

I'm not convinced that this Six Flags nonsense is anything other than a distraction that someone in Sandusky made up. I've yet to see any analyst suggest or Raynor suggest it.

Monday, January 24, 2011 12:57 PM

Yeah, this is the first we've really heard of it. I mean, woudln't Six Flags have to be interested in a merger/buyout (and I doubt they are).

Kinzel has really started to stoop lower than I imagined. Just goes to show how out of touch with reality the guy is.

Monday, January 24, 2011 1:42 PM

His world is collapsing around him, he is going to into panic mode, and he can't circle the wagons anymore because he fired the person that ordinarily took care of this kind of stuff.

Monday, January 24, 2011 1:49 PM

Well, it was discussed here, but in the article it was just some creditors of Six Flags speculating on an investment firm visiting Cedar Fair offices. They didn't offer any evidence that such a thought even crossed anyone's mind. (Article text here, since it's not available at the link in the thread.)

Monday, January 24, 2011 2:23 PM

Yeah, I knew about the word floating around about Apollo eyeing Six Flags or whatever, but even then, that's a far cry from trying to merge the two companies. I mean, Merlin is owned by Blackstone, and so is Sea World Parks, but they're not merged. That's like saying that LaQuinta and Merlin merged just because Blackstone owns both.

And if that's honestly what Kinzel and Co. think, then they know even less about financing and "How Stuff Works™" than I even imagined.

Monday, January 24, 2011 2:34 PM

I know this is an old subject - but I'd wish the register had more money to hire interesting reporters/writers... That entire article was about as fun to read as the phone book...

That said - I do agree if Kinzel is so hell bent on this rant, It will make the ousting a lot more interesting in weeks to come...

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 1:01 AM

Concerning the rumors of a Six Flag's merger. These rumors can be tracked down to one specific location: the Corporate Headquarters of Cedar Fair Entertainment.

Google, call industry folks, read the Wall Street Journal. No one, other than Kinzel and Company, are suggesting such a combination.

This is an attempt to spin the news and play on fears held by Ohio unitholders. It is a subtle telegraphing of the message Sandusky is at risk of loosing the Corporate Headquarters of CF.

No doubt some PR professionals helped formulate the "messaging" and development of this tactic.* They are attempting to rob shareholders of supporters for on-going unitholder proposals.

Such cynical moves by Cedar Fair are rightly dismissed by local unitholders. Cedar Fair presents itself as desperate and out of options when it employees such sad tactics.


Last edited by Leland Wykoff, Tuesday, January 25, 2011 1:06 AM

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