SeaWorld showing signs of improvement for fourth quarter and 2015 overall

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SeaWorld announced their fourth quarter results today and things are beginning to improve slowly but surely for the company as they saw an increase in both attendance and revenue.

Here is a look at fourth quarter 2015 versus fourth quarter 2014 for SeaWorld:

  • Attendance of 4.41 million, compared to 4.37 million in 2014.
  • Total revenues of $267.9 million, compared to $264.5 million in 2014.
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $47.3 million, compared to $49.9 million in 2014.
  • Net loss of $11.0 million and Adjusted Net Loss of $9.6 million, compared to net loss of $25.4 million and Adjusted Net Loss of $17.8 million in 2014.

And here is a look at the full 2014 year vs 2015:

  • Attendance of 22.47 million, compared to 22.40 million in 2014.
  • Total revenues of $1.37 billion, compared to $1.38 billion in 2014.
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $361.1 million, compared to $370.1 million in 2014.
  • Net income of $49.1 million and Adjusted Net Income of $63.9 million, compared to net income of $49.9 million and Adjusted Net Income of $59.4 million in 2014.

Attendance in the fourth quarter increased by approximately 43,000 guests, or 1.0%, as a result of a favorable operating schedule for the company’s fall events, and the impact of favorable weather when compared to the prior year fourth quarter.

Also today during the earnings call, SeaWorld Chief Executive Officer Joel Manby acknowledged that the company spied on PETA by asking ask human resources employee Paul McComb to pose as an animal rights activist and join the group since mid-2014.

“We recognize the need to ensure that all of our security and other activities align with our core values and ethical standards. As always, the security and well-being of our employees, customers and animals remain at the forefront of our business practices.” Joel said in a statement issued on the parks blog.  You can read the full statement from SeaWorld here.

SeaWorld will be taking new security measures within the company, including the hiring of Freeh Group International Solutions to oversee the companies security practices.

We have the complete earnings call press release after the break.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for the latest news, photos and more from SeaWorld!

SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: SEAS), a leading theme park and entertainment company, today reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year of 2015.

Results Overview

Fourth Quarter 2015 versus Fourth Quarter 2014

Attendance of 4.41 million, compared to 4.37 million in 2014.
Total revenues of $267.9 million, compared to $264.5 million in 2014.
Adjusted EBITDA of $47.3 million, compared to $49.9 million in 2014.
Net loss of $11.0 million and Adjusted Net Loss of $9.6 million, compared to net loss of $25.4 million and Adjusted Net Loss of $17.8 million in 2014.
Full Year 2015 versus Full Year 2014

Attendance of 22.47 million, compared to 22.40 million in 2014.
Total revenues of $1.37 billion, compared to $1.38 billion in 2014.
Adjusted EBITDA of $361.1 million, compared to $370.1 million in 2014.
Net income of $49.1 million and Adjusted Net Income of $63.9 million, compared to net income of $49.9 million and Adjusted Net Income of $59.4 million in 2014.
Returned $117.3 million to shareholders through dividend declarations and share repurchases, including $45.0 million of share repurchases in 2015.
“We achieved attendance and revenue growth in the fourth quarter. Additionally, our Adjusted EBITDA for 2015 was within the guidance range we provided in November. These are continued indications that the business is stabilizing,” said Joel Manby, President and Chief Executive Officer of SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. “Our near term priorities remain clear: execute our strategy with a focus on operational excellence and deliver the consistent and sustainable financial performance expected of our great organization.

“The leadership changes we announced last week are another important step on our roadmap to stabilization and growth. We will continue to take the necessary actions to drive results and shareholder value, as we work to confront the external headwinds that continue to affect the business. Looking ahead, this summer we will open three highly anticipated attractions, including two new roller coasters in Florida and a new dolphin habitat and guest experience in Texas,” Manby added. “Over the course of the year we will continue to focus on our simplified pricing plan and explore opportunities to further develop our resort strategy as we continue to implement the key components of our plan.”

Fourth Quarter 2015 Results

During the fourth quarter of 2015, the company generated revenue of $267.9 million, an increase of $3.3 million, or 1%, versus the fourth quarter of 2014. Adjusted EBITDA was $47.3 million, a decrease of $2.6 million, or 5% compared to $49.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2014. The company reported a net loss of $11.0 million, or $0.13 per diluted share, and an Adjusted Net Loss of $9.6 million, or $0.11 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2015, all improvements over the prior year quarter. Net cash provided by operating activities improved to $6.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2015 compared to net cash used in operating activities of $8.4 million in the prior year fourth quarter.

Total revenue per capita increased by 0.3% to $60.77 in the fourth quarter of 2015 compared to $60.60 a year ago. Admission per capita, defined as admissions revenue divided by total attendance, decreased slightly by 0.5% to $37.89 in the fourth quarter of 2015 from $38.09 a year ago. In-park per capita spending, calculated as food, merchandise and other revenue divided by total attendance, increased by 1.6% to $22.88 in the fourth quarter of 2015, from $22.51 in the prior year, primarily due to culinary price increases.

Attendance in the fourth quarter increased by approximately 43,000 guests, or 1.0%, as a result of a favorable operating schedule for the company’s fall events, and the impact of favorable weather when compared to the prior year fourth quarter, offset by a decline in attendance at the company’s Texas location. The decline in Texas primarily relates to a reduction in passholder visitation due to the changes made to the Fun Card product for this location, along with a lack of significant competitive offerings. To address these challenges, the company changed the Fun Card product for Texas and will open a new attraction in 2016, Discovery Point, which will include a new dolphin habitat and underwater viewing area and will offer guests an opportunity to interact and swim with dolphins.

Adjusted EBITDA for the fourth quarter of 2015 decreased by $2.6 million, resulting from an increase in selling, general and administrative expenses primarily related to additional marketing costs associated with the company’s reputation initiatives, partially offset by the impact of higher revenue and a decline in operating expenses for the fourth quarter.

Full Year 2015 Results

For the full year 2015, the company generated revenue of $1.37 billion, a decrease of $6.8 million, less than 1%, compared to 2014. Adjusted EBITDA was $361.1 million, a decrease of $9.0 million, or 2%, compared to Adjusted EBITDA of $370.1 million in 2014. In 2015, the company generated net income of $49.1 million, or $0.57 per diluted share, and Adjusted Net Income of $63.9 million, or $0.74 per diluted share. In 2014, the company generated net income of $49.9 million, or $0.57 per diluted share, and Adjusted Net Income of $59.4 million, or $0.68 per diluted share. Net cash provided by operating activities increased by $24.7 million, to $286.3 million in 2015 compared to $261.5 million in 2014.

Total revenue per capita declined by 0.8% to $61.01 in 2015 compared to $61.51 in 2014. Admission per capita decreased by 1.8% to $37.69 in 2015 from $38.37 in the prior year. The decline in admission per capita primarily relates to an increase in promotional offerings and passholder visitation along with an unfavorable shift in the park attendance mix compared to the prior year period. In-park per capita spending increased to $23.32 in 2015 from $23.14 in 2014.

When compared to the prior year, attendance for 2015 increased by approximately 72,000 guests, or 0.3%. Attendance improved at all but two of the company’s park locations, primarily due to increased promotional offerings, strong passholder visitation and additional consumer event programs, and a favorable operating schedule due to the later timing of Labor Day in 2015. The impact of these factors was largely offset by reduced attendance in Texas and California. The decline in Texas primarily relates to the factors discussed above and the decline in California primarily relates to continued SeaWorld brand challenges.

Adjusted EBITDA for 2015 decreased by $9.0 million, reflecting a decrease in total revenue along with an increase in selling, general and administrative expenses, partially offset by a decrease in operating expenses for 2015. The increase in selling, general and administrative expenses was largely related to additional third party consulting costs, an increase in marketing costs associated with the company’s reputation campaign and an increase in legal fees when compared to the prior year. The decrease in operating expenses was primarily due to cost savings initiatives resulting from the restructuring program announced in December 2014.

Share Repurchases and Dividends

During the fourth quarter of 2015, the company repurchased a total of 1,577,835 shares of common stock at an average price of $18.99 per share and a total cost of approximately $30.0 million. For the full year of 2015, the company repurchased a total of 2,413,803 shares of common stock at an average price of $18.62 per share and a total cost of approximately $45.0 million, leaving approximately $190.0 million available for future repurchases under the company’s previously announced share repurchase program. The company may utilize remaining cash availability under its credit agreement to opportunistically repurchase shares in the future.

On January 5, 2016, the company’s Board of Directors declared a cash dividend of $0.21 per share, which was paid on January 22, 2016, to all common stockholders of record at the close of business on January 15, 2016.

On February 22, 2016, the company’s Board of Directors declared a cash dividend of $0.21 per share, which will be paid on April 1, 2016 to all common stockholders of record at the close of business on March 14, 2016. Based on this dividend declaration, certain performance-vesting restricted shares held by some of the company’s equity plan participants will vest on April 1, 2016. The company expects to recognize approximately $28.0 million of equity compensation expense and record approximately $3.4 million of accumulated dividends related to these performance-vesting restricted shares during the first quarter of 2016.

Guidance

The company intends to issue full year 2016 Adjusted EBITDA guidance with its first quarter 2016 earnings release.

Conference Call

The company will hold a conference call today, Thursday, February 25 at 9 a.m. Eastern Time to discuss its fourth quarter and full year 2015 financial results. The conference call will be broadcast live on the Internet and the release and conference call can be accessed via the company’s website at www.seaworldentertainment.com by clicking on the “Investor Relations” link located on the upper right corner of that page. For those unable to participate in the live call, a replay of the webcast will be available after 12 p.m. Eastern Time February 25, 2016 via the “Investor Relations” section of www.seaworldentertainment.com. A replay of the call can also be accessed telephonically from 12 p.m. Eastern Time on February 25, 2016 through 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on March 3, 2016 by dialing 855-859-2056 from anywhere in the U.S. or 1-404-537-3406 from international locations, conference code 20317495.

Statement Regarding Non-GAAP Financial Measures

This earnings release and accompanying financial statement tables include several supplemental non-GAAP financial measures, including Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income per Diluted Share and Free Cash Flow. Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income per Diluted Share and Free Cash Flow are not recognized terms under GAAP, should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for a measure of liquidity or performance prepared in accordance with GAAP and are not indicative of net income or loss as determined under GAAP. Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income per Diluted Share, Free Cash Flow and other non-GAAP financial measures have limitations that should be considered before using these measures to evaluate the company’s liquidity or financial performance. Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income, Adjusted Net (Loss) Income per Diluted Share and Free Cash Flow, as presented, may not be comparable to similarly titled measures of other companies due to varying methods of calculation.

The financial statement tables that accompany this press release include a reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures to the applicable most comparable U.S. GAAP financial measures.

About SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc.

SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: SEAS) is a leading theme park and entertainment company providing experiences that matter, and inspiring guests to protect animals and the wild wonders of our world. The company is one of the world’s foremost zoological organizations and a global leader in animal welfare, training, husbandry and veterinary care. The company collectively cares for what it believes is one of the largest zoological collections in the world and has helped lead advances in the care of animals. The company also rescues and rehabilitates marine and terrestrial animals that are ill, injured, orphaned or abandoned, with the goal of returning them to the wild. The SeaWorld® rescue team has helped more than 27,000 animals in need over the last 50 years.

SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. owns or licenses a portfolio of recognized brands including SeaWorld, Busch Gardens® and Sea Rescue®. Over its more than 50-year history, the company has built a diversified portfolio of 11 destination and regional theme parks that are grouped in key markets across the United States, many of which showcase its one-of-a-kind zoological collection of over 800 species of animals. The company’s theme parks feature a diverse array of rides, shows and other attractions with broad demographic appeal which deliver memorable experiences and a strong value proposition for its guests.

Copies of this and other news releases as well as additional information about SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. can be obtained online at www.seaworldentertainment.com. Shareholders and prospective investors can also register to automatically receive the company’s press releases, SEC filings and other notices by e-mail by registering at that website.

 

 




Author Description

Clint

Clint

Clint Gamache started Thrillgeek back in 2013 to share his love of theme parks, pop culture and other geeky stuff with the world. He can be found on Twitter @cgamache83