Fiesta Texas owner Six Flags takes $70M hit as attendance drops

The company's new strategy is working because they had a record first-quarter revenue.

Fiesta Texas owner Six Flags takes $70M hit as attendance drops

Six Flags Entertainment Corp. continues to experience a decline in attendance at its theme parks. This includes San Antonio's Fiesta Texas as well as several others.

The company's turnstile count dropped 26% from the previous year in 2022, and then another 5% in the first quarter 2023.

Six Flags' (NYSE: SIX), which generated $142 million of revenue in the first quarter, a 3 percent increase over the same period last year, was not enough to offset its net loss, as 1.6 millions guests visited their parks.

Selim Bassoul was appointed CEO of Six Flags by the end of November 2021. He said that the company's revenue for its first quarter is an indicator that "our new culture and strategy are taking hold."

Dennis Speigel is the founder and CEO of International Theme Park Services Inc., who has at times been critical of Six Flags' leadership. He believes that there were some positives from the first quarter. These include higher spending per capita among guests who visited the parks. He also warns that Six Flags still has a lot of ground to cover.

It's got an impressive comeback trail. He said, 'There's no doubt about it.

Six Flags' stock opened the market on May 8 at $27.03 per shares. The 52-week high for the company was $33.76.

Zachary Warring is an equity analyst with CFRA Research. He said, "We love the strategy shift in 2022 to become a premium park experience, by eliminating heavily discounted ticket, investing new attractions and events, and focusing operating efficiencies." We see value in the shares."

Bassoul says Six Flags was facing challenges long before his arrival.

He said that despite operating in a highly competitive industry, the core business of his company began to stagnate before the pandemic. This was during a March conference call. It was obvious that we needed to reset our strategy and organization to achieve our full potential.

The company reported total debt of approximately $2.5 billion as of April 2 and had cash or cash equivalents in the amount of $65 millions. Deferred revenues were down by $33 million, to $152 millions. Six Flags officials attribute this decline to a smaller base of Active Pass members.

Six Flags attracted 20.4 million visitors to its parks in the past year, down from 28.4 million in the year before. The company will suffer a revenue loss of $139 million in 2022 as a result.

Bassoul has stated in recent months, however, that Six Flags will continue to use its premium pricing strategy.

Speigel was pleased with some of Six Flags first-quarter results, but he also said, "They need to get the mojo going on the rides again." Attendance is driven by this. This will improve their numbers.