SeaWorld Parks attendance up 5.3% in 2011

Posted Wednesday, March 21, 2012 9:24 AM | Contributed by Jeff

SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, the Orlando-based owner of 10 theme parks across the country, appears to have rebounded from a two-year slump. The company's top executive told the Orlando Sentinel on Tuesday that attendance across the chain climbed 5.3 percent in 2011 — to about 23.6 million visitors in all. It is the company's first year-over-year increase since 2008.

Read more from The Orlando Sentinel.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 11:10 AM

"SeaWorld also plans to borrow an additional $500 million to pay a dividend to the Blackstone Group, the New York-based private-equity firm that bought the company in a leveraged buyout in 2009. When coupled with a $110 million payment that SeaWorld made to Blackstone last year, the new dividend would mean Blackstone has recouped nearly two-thirds of the $975 million in cash it put up to buy SeaWorld from beer brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev."

How long until the sale/IPO of SeaWorld Parks, after which it will limp along flirting with bankruptcy thanks to the heavy debt load courtesy of Blackstone?

Last edited by hambone, Wednesday, March 21, 2012 11:10 AM

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