SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment has an uphill battle ahead of them, and they know it. The company released second quarter results on Thursday morning, some of which were negative, others positive. The company reported an overall decline in attendance, but not the huge slide many were predicting. As the company moves forward they are optimistic about the remainder of the year, as big events and announcements are on the horizon.
Attendance for the second quarter of 2015 was down company wide by about 1.6 million visitors. While that sounds like doom and gloom, it’s not entirely bad. Attendance in parks like Busch Gardens Williamsburg, and Tampa, as well as SeaWorld Orlando is actually up over last year.
Events like flooding in Texas left SeaWorld San Antonio closed for several days, while SeaWorld San Diego is just having a tough time attracting visitors because of continuing “branding issues”.
The company also reported losses in net income of 85% to $5.8 million, and a a revenue decline of 3% to $391.6 million.
The revenue loss is likely from the huge campaign launched earlier this year to help reform the company’s image, and the huge discounts the company has levied company wide at all parks to attract more visitors. We’ll have to wait until.the third quarter results to see of those discounts helped in the busy summer season.
Our attendance for the second quarter declined due to the timing of Easter, record levels of rainfall in Texas and continued brand challenges in California. These factors were partially offset by improved demand in our other park locations, including Florida,” said Joel Manby, President and Chief Executive Officer of SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. “We realize we have much work ahead of us to recover more of our attendance base, increase revenue and improve our performance as returning to historical performance levels will take time and investment. To address some of our competitive challenges in Florida, we have adjusted our attraction plans with the announcement of two new significant coaster additions for 2016. On the reputation side, early feedback on our campaign has been positive, however, we recognize that fully resolving our brand challenges in California will require sustained focus and commitment to correct misinformation.”
“As we look to the remainder of the year, from a revenue perspective, we expect to benefit from favorable calendar timing, our popular fall event lineup and improvement in our revenue per capita,” said Manby.
The company is looking to announce an all new strategic vision on November 6th that could outline how Manby is looking to rebuild not only the companys’ reputation, but also attendance and profit margin.
The company has huge plans for 2016 with several major new attractions.
SeaWorld Orlando will build a new shark themed coaster, and habitat when they open Mako in the summer. Busch Gardens Tampa will be opening Cobra’s Curse, an all new spinning coaster.
SeaWorld San Antonio will borrow a page from Discovery Cove and offer dolphin swims and interactions when Discovery Point opens next year.