Six Flags agrees to sell seven parks for $312 million, Magic Mountain excluded

Posted Thursday, January 11, 2007 5:31 PM | Contributed by Chitown

Six Flags, Inc. announced today that it has entered into an agreement to sell three of its water parks and four of its theme parks to PARC 7F-Operations Corporation (PARC) of Jacksonville, FL for $312 million, consisting of $275 million in cash and a note receivable for $37 million. The seven parks are: Six Flags Darien Lake in Buffalo, NY; Six Flags Elitch Gardens in Denver, CO; Frontier City and the White Water Bay water park in Oklahoma City, OK; SplashTown in Houston, TX; Waterworld USA in Concord, CA; and Wild Waves and Enchanted Village in Seattle, WA. The seven parks are estimated to have generated approximately $30 million of Park EBITDA and 3.6 million of attendance in 2006.

Read the press release from PR Newswire via Yahoo.

Thursday, January 11, 2007 5:51 PM
Wonder if they will do a chain season pass? I'm planning to visit 2 of these this year.
Thursday, January 11, 2007 5:51 PM
The LA Times asked me if I thought it was surprising that they retained SFMM, and I said not at all. Think about all of the marketing agreements the company has made, and consider how much more valuable those agreements are when you have a presence in the second largest market in the country. You know how nutty Shapiro is about marketing.
Thursday, January 11, 2007 6:59 PM
What I think is funny, is that back in June or July, they asking price for just SFEG was 170 million. Now, they have sold four parks and three waterparks for just less than twice that.
Thursday, January 11, 2007 10:06 PM
Not only that, but a few real estate honchos explained to me what a nightmare zoning and waste issues would be for that land SFMM sits on. It just probably wasn't worth it to someone considering buying it, especially considering they would get *zero* help from Shapiro & Co.
Thursday, January 11, 2007 10:26 PM
im kinda suprised they didnt get SFA in the deal. from what i heard, Shapiro wasnt impressed on his visit there. and trust me, and anyone who lives in the DC area will back me up on this, the land that SFA sits on is worth MILLIONS; if i were Six Flags management and were facing the debt that SF is facing, see ya SFA lol.

granted, the parks in question were bought by a company that will actually operate those parks. what im saying is, Six Flags America, IMO, doesnt make enough money to keep it as a park. it just doesnt. ask at least 500 million for it, sell it, and pay off some debt.

just my two cents....

Thursday, January 11, 2007 11:53 PM
Didn't Herschend offer several hundred million more for the same properties a few months ago?
Thursday, January 11, 2007 11:58 PM
^ Yup. I wonder how they got from a bid at $650 million to ending up accepting one at $312 million...less than half.
Friday, January 12, 2007 3:16 AM
But didn't the original bid also include magic mountain. I can't remember for sure.
Friday, January 12, 2007 4:47 AM
What a shame. A Herschend Magic Mountain could have been nice.
Friday, January 12, 2007 7:28 AM
vacoasterfreak, I've heard the opposite about Shapiro's visits to SFA. It definetly sees like TomKat had a good time.
Friday, January 12, 2007 9:16 AM
IIRC, Herschend's bid did not include SFMM.
Friday, January 12, 2007 10:31 AM
^ True, but it was still higher than $312M, wasn't it? I think there's some decision-making that went on in NYC where SF decided they really WANTED to keep SFMM. Maybe the upturn in the '06 fiscals had something to do with that....

As far as the land values of the parks included in the deal: SFEG was clearly the crown jewel, downtown acreage in that area of Denver, that park alone probably accounted for about half of the entire purchase...

WW/EV is more *suburban-y*, still valuable, but with limited expansion and a CROWD of residential development surrounding the park...eventually, I imagine Puyallup will be THE amusements provider in the area (with an expanding schedule, that's a virtual no-brainer)...I'd bet that WW will grow, and continue to be *the draw* for the park. The rides section will survive as long as Puyallup holds off on a full schedule of operations...

SFDL and FC...the rides themselves, even depreciated, are probably worth as much or more than the land...

Friday, January 12, 2007 10:23 PM
I believe the reporting was way off concerning that quote bid *supposedly* turned in by Herschend. That $650 million figure was the amount Six Flags wanted from Herschend including SFMM in the deal. It was still early in the negotiations and of course SFMM was eventually rejected. Something tells me that Herschend pulled out of negotiations long before this other deal came into play, and that their final bid was nowhere near $650 mill. For four waterparks and two small theme parks? I think not.
Sunday, January 14, 2007 9:44 PM
Here's the story from November about the original bid on the parks in question. It did say that one bid was for 650 million (including SFMM) and that the other two were for "less than 650 million."

Sunday, January 14, 2007 11:11 PM
rollergator-There are several problems with the land that SFEG sits on, which makes it difficult for it to be almost anything else. It sits on a flood plain because it's right next to the platte river. There are train tracks inbetween it and the Pepsi Center, which are VERY loud. The best thing they could do with that land would be more parking for the Pepsi Center.

I do believe that park might have accounted for a lot of the purchase though, considering they wanted 170 million alone for that park back in June.


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