SeaWorld Parks posts lower attendance, revenue, net income for 4Q and the year

Posted Friday, February 27, 2015 10:10 AM | Contributed by Jeff

Attendance to the company's 11 parks between October and December fell 2.2 percent to 4.4 million from 4.5 million in the same period a year ago. Attendance fell 4.3 percent during the entire year to 22.4 million from 23.4 million in 2013. For 2014, the company reported net income of $49.9 million, or 57 cents per share, compared with $51.9 million, or 59 cents per share, in 2013. Adjusted earnings were 68 cents per share, below the 73 cents per share analysts expected.

Read more from AP via ABCNews.

Friday, February 27, 2015 10:11 AM

I still say that anyone who has watched this industry for any length of time would disregard the Blackfish nonsense and recognize that spending almost nothing on cap ex for several years will negatively impact attendance. People don't know the Busch parks are the same company, and I'm sure they're sliding too.

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Friday, February 27, 2015 11:16 AM

My worry is that the Blue Ocean project will consume all of the funds intended for projects like that. I imagine the cost of those habitats isn't going to leave much left over for additional attractions at the SeaWorld parks. I hope I'm wrong, though, because having been to the Orlando and San Antonio parks, they need more E-ticket attractions. Not an overload, mind you, but even another coaster or something might "balance" the parks out a bit better.

I do think that the Busch Gardens duo has hit the sweet spot, of course, but that doesn't do you much good in Orlando or San Antonio where there are competing parks with much more to do.

Last edited by sirloindude, Friday, February 27, 2015 11:17 AM
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Friday, February 27, 2015 12:18 PM

If I'm the new CEO, I put a stop to the Blue Ocean nonsense immediately. You don't double down on the whales, you put the focus elsewhere. Orlando desperately needs a new high-capacity attraction, and I don't think you need to cover it in IP to make it work. We could certainly use a wing coaster down here!

Although speaking of IP, if you have the Sesame Street license, do something with it!

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Friday, February 27, 2015 1:37 PM

Jeff said:

...if you have the Sesame Street license....

Then tell people how to GET there!

(Can ya tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame Street?).... :~P

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Friday, February 27, 2015 1:38 PM

I really like the Blue Ocean concept, personally, but yeah, a third B&M would be just what the doctor ordered for the Orlando park. I initially wouldn't have thought that the San Antonio park would need something quite as elaborate, but now with Iron Rattler and the upcoming Batman-The Ride (a ride with more publicity than I ever could have imagined), it might take something more potent to really stand out.

I have to imagine, though, that these problems must surely be due to more than just the woes of the Orlando park, but that one stands out probably more than any of the others as a park ill-suited to its competition/environment.

I also have to wonder why BGW even got that Premier coaster that's going to open this year. Surely they could've ridden out their lineup a bit longer. That money should have gone to one of the SeaWorld properties.

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Friday, February 27, 2015 5:29 PM

Not to mention the marketing strategy of not announcing your new (although lame per my experiences with similar clones) roller coaster BTW when most families have already set sights on their vacation destinations for the summer. Apparently the marketing department is in the same ship with the live performance department....budget cuts.

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Saturday, February 28, 2015 12:48 PM

I don't see people out protesting about sea lions, dolphins, porpoises or penguins. Have to agree with Jeff, Blue Ocean is doubling down on your weakest hand.

Of course, never put it past PETA to start up a "Save the Kraken" campaign...

Last edited by rollergator, Saturday, February 28, 2015 12:49 PM
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Sunday, March 1, 2015 1:20 PM

Jeff said:

speaking of IP, if you have the Sesame Street license, do something with it!

I have a suspicion that the folks at Sesame Workshop want to distance themselves from SeaWorld at the moment. It wouldn't surprise me if that agreement is not renewed.

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Sunday, March 1, 2015 1:23 PM

(Disclaimer: I don't know one way or another having worked there, but...) I doubt that's the case. I don't think you open up something like Sesame Place without a very long agreement.

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