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Village Roadshow sells Wet'n'Wild Sydney to Parques Reunidos

20 posts in this topic

Just saw this hit News.com.au but you beat me to it.

Quote

Village Roadshow has sold its Wet'n'Wild water park in western Sydney to Spanish leisure park operator Parques Reunidos for an up-front purchase price of $40 million.

The company says the sale will cause it a pre-tax loss of approximately $25 million in 2017-18, while proceeds will be used to cut debt.

In addition to the $40 million, Village Roadshow will receive payment that will depend on the park's revenue performance up to June 30, 2020.

I wonder how this impacts people who hold memberships \ passes that include WnWS...?

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Good thing too, that park has bled buckets of money from day one. VRL shareholders must be breathing sighs of relief.

Wonder why a company like Parques Reunidos wants to buy WnWS. Surely they must have plans to turn the park around? If they do, I wouldn't be surprised if the park underwent major changes.

Edited by XxMrYoshixX

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I believe that the park can be a success. Let's face it, the park has faced many challenges since opening and a new operator with a wealth of experience and new ideas will only be beneficial to the long term viability of the park. Sydney needs this park to survive if it is ever going to have another theme park on the scale of Wonderland again one day. Hopefully, this can be the impetus for Parques Reunidos to build on any success they can have with the park and look at investing in a  sister theme park nearby to really own the Sydney market.

 

I hear there is a them park  on the Gold Coast that would be ripe for sale to such an operator!!!  Perhaps this could be the first of even bigger ventures into the Aussie market!! Time will tell!

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23 minutes ago, brissy phil said:

Having not been there, curious... what are the design, capacity and operational problems since day one?

In a word- shit.

Poorly designed, the capacity issues were what really set the tone in its first year of operation. The original plans for the park never came to fruition and we were left with a park that was a shadow of what if COULD have been,

Dont get me wrong- there are some excellent slides at the park and with proper management and some investment in the right areas , the park could be excellent.

Edited by Jobe
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Well, wasn't sea jellies supposed to be open by now?

I think they'd be stupid to cut CAPEX spending at SW - the park is a hollow shell, that barely survives based on it's 3-park affiliation at present. it needs a new kid on the block to bring people back to something wow.

If they let SW languish to save money, it will only end up costing them more as another loss-making park needs to be sold off.

You gotta spend money to make money.

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14 minutes ago, AlexB said:

Well, wasn't sea jellies supposed to be open by now?

We had a few cold nights and the poor jellies set.  The good news is they still taste good.

14 minutes ago, AlexB said:

Well, wasn't sea jellies supposed to be open by now?

Yes I believe that was the case by I don't know why it hasn't. 

 

Edited by Skeeta
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2 hours ago, XxMrYoshixX said:

Good thing too, that park has bled buckets of money from day one. VRL shareholders must be breathing sighs of relief.

I don't think that's correct. The park was beating expectations and making a profit in its first year at least. Unfortunately visitor numbers dropped significantly in following years.

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11 minutes ago, GoGoBoy said:

I don't think that's correct. The park was beating expectations and making a profit in its first year at least. Unfortunately visitor numbers dropped significantly in following years.

Well there is a simple answer to that the first year it was new and exciting and everyone wanted to go and try it out. But since they opened in 2013 they have not added any new slides or major attractions so people have lost interest. For example my family have only had a season pass once and the park was very unorganised and there were not enough slides to accomodate the amount of people going so we then decided that we would not by a pass again until they put in new slides and expanded but they haven’t so since then we have not went to the park this is also the case with many other people I know. I know many people who would by passes if they opened new slides and invested into the park. If this company choses to do so then I really believe the park can be successful.

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I’d heard that some of the initial plans prior to development didn’t make it to fruition, that Could account for the differential. I haven’t followed it that closely given I’m on the GC but going off comments on here what was delivered was well under the expectation 

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1 hour ago, GoGoBoy said:

My understanding is that the park cost around the $120 mil mark but the Parkz article suggests $80?

Good call... I dug through it all and $80 million was the estimate when it was announced, "125-130 million" was the expected cost in the FY2013 annual report.

For what it's worth too, the first season had EBITDA of $14.5 million and profit before tax of $9.5 million. They sold $20-odd million worth of annual passes that first season, which was surely the biggest single mistake they made and a large piece of the puzzle for how we ended up with today's (rather predictable) announcement.

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I’m from Sydney and have visited WNW Sydney at least once a year and have stayed pretty active on WetnWild forums. The first year was very successful attendance wise (being a novelty) but overall there were too many problems in the first year - huge lines and high prices were the main ones! This either stopped people from visiting again OR people decided to wait until they get new attractions. There was also the cancelling of the New Years Eve event and there was just a general negative cloud around WetnWild (despite having some great slides).

Attendance drastically dropped the following years. Despite some improvements, the bad reputation from the first year remains - “lines are so long” everyone says (despite being quite short nowadays except when it’s very hot) and “everything is expensive” (all parks are like that and they’ve had many special offers in later years). In five years they also haven’t added a single new attraction and everyone is bored of the same stuff! 

Many of the slides are actually very good, I believe better than WNW Gold Coast. I do believe there is still a negative stigma surrounding WetnWild amongst Sydney residents mostly due to negative feedback from the first year. People either forget WNW exists (poor advertising) or think negatively of it.

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