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GoGoBoy

More Whitewater World news

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I just finished listening to an audio file of the Macquarie Leisure EOY financial presentation. It is quite interesting and is publicly available on the Macq Leisure website. There were a number of items which the CEO (Greg Shaw) mentioned in relation to Whitewater World. As this info has now been essentially made public by the company themselves, I can discuss it on here. Greg mentioned that the park will have not only a Nickelodeon themed play structure but also a Wiggles themed area. It will cater for the younger kids really well and is a perfect tie-in with Dreamworld. It is likely to be a toddler pool with slides and interactive features. The other point worth discussing was the revelation that Macq Leisure is already considering future expansion of the waterpark. Greg talked about using the car park area at the back of the park as the obvious choice for expansion. He did however say this would all depend on how well the waterpark does initially. So if they get good numbers through the door there is a very, very high chance they will add more attractions in the near future. This is the perfect excuse for all you park junkies to get over to Whitewater World as soon as it opens and have as much fun there as you can, as often as you can. The higher the attendance, the more chances there are that the park will get bigger and even better

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The planning for the water park would have likely involved opening up only a portion of the land which had been earmarked for development of the second gate water park. I'd estimate that the park is as we see it, at best, a half to two-thirds of its maximum size. Consider it testing the waters, so to speak. Future expansions will be made based on how the public responds to the attractions on offer and the way in which it is presented. We will inevitably see changes made in the next few years based on how the market responds to its offerings in relation to Wet'n'Wild. I'd take a different approach to new attractions. I believe if anything were to put pressure on Macquarie Leisure to outlay more capital expenditure it would be lacklustre attendance rather than an enthusiastic fan base. If the market continues to favour Wet'n'Wild after Whitewater World opens, then that is a signal to Macquarie Leisure that they need to up the ante. This said, what we see at the moment is a relatively low capacity water park. If attendance is overwhelming, as I believe it will be, there will be a need to expand simply to increase the park's capacity and as such increase its scope for profitability. Of course this is from a hypothetical business perspective, I'm by no means suggesting people don't visit the park.

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Some good points there Richard. However the CEO specifically said if the waterpark performs well and has high attendance levels, which they are expecting it will, then they would strongly consider expanding the park. He certainly gave the impression that large attendance is what would trigger expansion and not the other way around

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You're right - my comments were more from a fundamental business perspective. Not so much based on Shaw's comments but rather I was toying with the ideas you mentioned in your last paragraph - a company who has just spent $56 million and is facing underwhelming returns is far more likely to invest further than one which is happy with the results. This leads back to my first point earlier about the Whitewater World we currently see is really about gaining penetration in a new market and seeing how consumers respond to a second water park. I don't think it was ever about creating a brand new water park that is meant to capture a significant portion of Wet'n'Wild's market. I for one would be very interested to know what their attendance and market share goals are in the immediate future, because I don't think they'd be anywhere near Wet'n'Wild's. Plus, with increased competition in the water park market, there needs to always be something up Whitewater World's sleeve, and this wouldn't be easily possible if we saw the park be everything it possibly could be from day one.

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I for one would be very interested to know what their attendance and market share goals are in the immediate future, because I don't think they'd be anywhere near Wet'n'Wild's.
That's pretty accurate Richard. Their attendance forecast was actually mentioned in the results presentation. It is 450,000 - 500,000 visits per year. The CEO mentioned that he thought this was a modest and achievable goal based on Wet 'n' Wild's visitation levels of 800,000 per year.

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Greg mentioned that the park will have not only a Nickelodeon themed play structure but also a Wiggles themed area. It will cater for the younger kids really well and is a perfect tie-in with Dreamworld. It is likely to be a toddler pool with slides and interactive features.
Ill bet you that the four slides in the play area will be red, yellow, blue and purple. I am certainly hoping that they boost the capacity fairly soon after the opening as i feel that the park lacks capacity, coupled with being the gold coasts biggest new attraction for this summer could mean horrendous crowds. But I agree with richo, they have probably left deliberate holes in their lineup so they can fill in later, and most likley better WnWs equivalent offerings (Bigger Extreme H20 style area anyone?). While at the same time they have hit the nail on the head with some of the key offerings (2 kids areas, both far bigger than WnWs offering, coupled with known characters could really pull in the essential family market)

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