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SeaWorld Makes $3.4 Billion Takeover Bid for Cedar Fair

Tom Morrow

Well-Known Member
As a person who values quality theme park experiences, I hope this does NOT happen. SeaWorld has still not been able to grasp the concept of even decent operations and guest service.


Horror Movie Guru
But people said Sea World was having financial troubles a few years ago....how can they afford to buy 5 theme parks??


Well-Known Member
This is actually a good move for Seaworld. Cedar Fair has the lowest value of the three regional chains. Their market cap at yesterdays close was $2.75 billlion. Seaworld's market cap was $4.5 billion while Six Flags was $3.32 billion. It will be interesting to see what Six Flags does in response to this because the combined Seaworld and Cedar Fair has a combined attendance of over 50 million in 2019 and that would put them within 1 million of Universals 2019 attendance.


Well-Known Member
A part of me thinks how nice it would be to have a platinum pass cover a lot more for not much more, bringing a good bang for the buck. The realistic side of me sees less competition bad. One less major player in the theme park industry.


Well-Known Member
Wouldn't it be nice to see a dolphin show at Knotts again?



Blood Orange Please
Premium Member
Thats good info. Glad to Sea World in a position to not only take over another amusement park but have the confidence that they can do it with an eye on doing it as a strategic strength.


Well-Known Member
I don't like this one bit, if only just from a competition and operational perspective. I can think of maybe a handful of times over the past 10 years that I've had anything approaching a solid operations experience at SWO/BGT/SWSD. While CF operations (especially Cedar Point's) may not be as crisp as they used to be, I would still put them miles ahead of the SEAS parks. I don't see a worthwhile positive to this as a consumer, either. Hopefully the board does their due diligence and then turns the offer down and focuses on continued recovery from COVID.
My only real complaint about the SW parks is when they changed their tier level of memberships a handful of years ago and then immediately changed them the year after which caused confusion when I was dealing with some staff. Like I have "premier" membership which gets me into all of their parks but they changed it the next year to "platinum" so while I still get access to all of the parks and the perks that go with it some of the staff get confused when they see premier on my passes but when they scan it then it still works.

If this actually somehow goes through I'm curious to see if they keep the season passes separate or make an ultimate platinum premier pass to attend all the parks and what that price point would be.

I've kept our SW parks premier/platinum passes because they are locked in at $20 a month but I've dropped our Cedar Fair park platinum passes for this year cause I simply don't see us getting to any of their parks since Dorney is the closest and Dorney alone isn't worth renewing it, especially with the lack of real benefits in terms of renewing. That has more to do with our travel plans for the year than the state of the parks though.

Tom Morrow

Well-Known Member
Personally I believe the best asset Seaworld is after is Cedar Fair's management. If this merger goes through I expect the combined park to be managed by Cedar Fair's leaderahip. Seaworld may be the more valuable company but that Cedar Fair's has better management.
I hope you're right.

I don't know. I have been to Busch Gardens and SeaWorld multiple times and thought they great.

Don't get me wrong - they're beautiful parks. It's been a while since I've been to Williamsburg and I've never been to the other two SeaWorlds, but SeaWorld Orlando, and even moreso Busch, have horrible operations and guest service. We mock Six Flags a lot on here but I do believe some Six Flags have better operations and guest service than SWO and BGT.

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