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Six Flags Announces Full-Year and Fourth Quarter 2008 Results


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On Screamscape today:

(3/18/09) In the wake of news outlets across the country trying to peck away at Six Flags' image, Mark Shapiro issued his own memo to all of the parks Monday morning to bring all of the positive changes they have made to the chain over the last three years, accomplishing what they intended to do in that period of time. Changes like cleaning up the parks, creating a huge increase in park sponsorship deals, getting guest PerCaps over the $40 mark and the big one… becoming "Free Cash Flow positive" for the first time in company history.

With all those tasks accomplished, they can now begin the process of taking on the companies huge debt issue… something the current management inherited from the previous one. Under what would pass as a normal financial environment, Six Flags stock should be doing well and they would have no problem refinancing some of their debt issues, but the world isn't quite itself at the current time so like many other companies, they are forced to look into any and all other strategic plans to fix their problems. One of their plans is to look into various possible "debt for equity exchanges" with their debt holders.

The employee letter mentions that while they have had positive meetings thus far with many of them, there is one key player who holds a senior number of the notes due in 2010 who has been refusing to meet with them and has, "refused to even meet with me in person." I have to mirror Shapiro's next comment here, that this just "Makes zero sense." Right now they ended the 2008 year with over $200 million in cash, and speaking to their partners and vendors, "Your bills are being paid and will continue to be paid."

He goes on to mention their attraction ties to major entertainment features like Terminator Salvation, The Mummy, The Dark Knight and also mentions something about an tie to the upcoming new version of "Fame". The parks will have new sponsors this year as well in the form of T-Mobile, Mars and in-park M&M Emporiums. He also indicated that the Everyone Pays Kids Pricing promotion will return this season as well.

Flashing forward with hints about the 50th Anniversary plans in 2011, he does mention that every single park will launch a new "major attraction" that season. Again, I've got a hunch that this could be a really good season for Six Flags… given the chance to shine instead of all the newspapers being so quick to slam them at every opportunity.

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Over the past couple of days, Six Flags stock has climbed by almost 50% in value (it's still low, but better than it was!). It looks like investors are seeing a resolution ot the financial stalemate, and are showing some confidence in Shapiro's plan and Six Flags future.

 

I wish I had money to invest right now, because I have a feeling that they are definitely on the right track and will have a VERY good year!

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Apparently Wall Street is becoming even more optimistic about the company. Stock has more than doubled in the past 2 weeks, and it's up 30% today alone! I knew I should have bought when it was down to 14 cents a share... :mellow:

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I think thing's will be better than anyone anticipates. With the news from Texas about the Attendance Record, and all the other Park's Opening's right around the corner, The Daycation is looking like a great option for Family's in this world that we live in today.

 

 

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In order for my confidence to increase in the overall operation of the park, Great Adventure at least, needs to reopen Houdini, get a swing ride and turn more traditional. The overall SF Chain seems to be wanting to remove these classic rides even those I find it fantastic that they are restoring certain classic rides including many coasters. I just do not believe this is happenning in our case.

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I'm sure they would have done all that and more at GA had they not been saddled with Kingda Ka by the old management. I have a feeling KK just eats up so much of the budget for maintenance and staffing, it means sacrificing a lot of other smaller attractions. It's a trade off, but KK is also a marquis attraction and can't just be closed and it wouldn't make financial sense to remove it.

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In order for my confidence to increase in the overall operation of the park, Great Adventure at least, needs to reopen Houdini, get a swing ride and turn more traditional. The overall SF Chain seems to be wanting to remove these classic rides even those I find it fantastic that they are restoring certain classic rides including many coasters. I just do not believe this is happening in our case.

 

I, too, was quite disappointed by the removal of the Flying Wave and the closure of Houdini. That having been said, the park has more than made up for those things (in my eyes) with the rehabs/restorations of the Big Wheel, Carousel and Log Flume...

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I, too, was quite disappointed by the removal of the Flying Wave and the closure of Houdini. That having been said, the park has more than made up for those things (in my eyes) with the rehabs/restorations of the Big Wheel, Carousel and Log Flume...

 

This seems to be one of Six Flags' major problems; they do not figure regular maintenance into park budgets. They let rides, attractions, and builings deteriorate and then when they finally do fix them people act as if it is some "grand" act on their part and that finally performing maintenance that should have been done all along makes up for all the bad decisions and mistakes.

 

I'm thrilled they are finally doing needed maintenance on a few rides, but I do not believe that makes up for all the things that have not been maintained, especially the ones that were so neglected they had to be removed or closed.

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I have a feeling that this will be a really good year for Great Adventure and Six Flags as a whole,with Over Texas already getting record attendance just in the spring,it will most than likely be an amazing year for every park.I don't know if they will end up having to file for Chapter 11 but if they do then :(

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This seems to be one of Six Flags' major problems; they do not figure regular maintenance into park budgets. They let rides, attractions, and builings deteriorate and then when they finally do fix them people act as if it is some "grand" act on their part and that finally performing maintenance that should have been done all along makes up for all the bad decisions and mistakes.

 

I'm thrilled they are finally doing needed maintenance on a few rides, but I do not believe that makes up for all the things that have not been maintained, especially the ones that were so neglected they had to be removed or closed.

 

That was a HUGE mistake on the part of the old management. The new management is working hard to correct that, but it will take time after so many years of delayed work.

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--Preparations are already underway for the 2011 season when EVERY Six Flags park will be receiving a major new attraction to celebrate Six Flags 50th.

Over at theme park review..Second block with pictures is where its at.

http://www.themeparkreview.com/forum/viewt...76&start=40

 

At the opening of TDK at six flags mexico, The executive vice president of entertainment and marketing said , In a few months, six flags will unveil ALL new attractions to rise at every six flags park for the 50th anniversary. They will begin in 2010 and end in 2011. .

 

So, what I get out of that is the new attractions will be announced soon and construction will take a while.

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