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VRTP Financial Year 2017/2018 Results

Jamberoo Fan

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Some interesting points from the results presentation:

  • Additional reduction in operational costs targeted across VRL's divisions and corporate

This was written in the 'Cost Reduction' section of the 'FY19 Outlook'. Could this mean less operational time of the rides in financial year 2018/2019? 

Also, TopGolf's attendance is stated as 25,000 people in the last financial year. TopGolf was only open for 19 days last financial year so it's average attendance is 1316 people per day so far. Based on the current attendance and revenue, each TopGolf visitor spends $36 per visit.

TopGolf's maximum capacity is 540 (90 bays of 6 people) and since bays are booked hourly (over, assuming, a 10 hour period - 9am to 7pm), that means it's maximum daily capacity is 5400. Minimum capacities are 90 (hourly) & 900 (10 hours). People are very likely to be attending as groups as based on the capacities and attendance statistics, if everyone occupied the bays by themselves, TopGolf would be operating over capacity! The larger the groups, the more bays available. It's most likely people attend TopGolf with just 1 other person  - in this situation, they are more likely to spend on food and beverage/souvenirs on weekdays, whilst extremely unlikely on Friday/weekends (This is because 1 hour of TopGolf costs more than the $36 cost of an average visit for each person). The larger the group, the more likely you are to spend on food and beverage/souvenirs. If the group is at least 3 people in size, purchasing food & beverage/souvenirs will very likely happen but decreases in likelihood on Fridays/weekends particularly after 2pm (This is, again, because TopGolf's hourly rate increases).

In their results presentation, for TopGolf, they mentioned their desire to:



Wet 'n' Wild Sydney made it's first loss ever - $1,000,000 - whilst attendance drops again by 21,000 people to 463,000 people per season (approximately 4000 people per day on average). People on average spend 30 cents more at Wet 'n' Wild Sydney than at TopGolf Gold Coast. Let's hope the new owners can fix that park! 

Gold Coast theme parks' attendance dropped by 378,000 people to 4,582,000 people per year (approximately 12,600 people per day on average). VRTP spent and earned more than last financial year on these theme parks but their profit decreased by $10.1 million. On average, people spent $59.25 per visit to the VRTPs on average. I'm expecting VRTP to be financially recovered around the same time DW also is.

This graph is also interesting:


However, this is concerning (especially in regards to next year's Viking's Revenge Flume Ride replacement) (from the 'Theme Parks - Outlook' section):


Prudent capital spend driven by guest feedback, including lower cost attractions which enhance guest appeal

In short, don't expect anything extravagant in the next 12 months.

Australian Outback Spectacular's "New exciting low capital expenditure..." show to open this financial year:


Heartland, a new show at the Australian Outback Spectacular incorporating advanced technology

Also, in their preliminary annual report (mainly the media release section):


...the most important ticket category, the season pass...

Just my opinion but if your most important ticket category is the season pass, I'd expect the theme park's quality to decline.

Another "new low cost" attraction, HyperCoast Walk, is mentioned & is hoped it will increase season pass sales. In the 'Theme Parks Performance Summary' section, TopGolf Gold Coast is mentioned again:


...in early trading, is one of the best sites amongst over 30 sites operating in the US.

It also mentions TopGolf had $2.2 million in one-off pre-opening expenses, which could mean it theoretically only made a profit so far of $100,000 but I wouldn't read too much into that figure yet as it only was open for 19 days last financial year.

This may please regular visitors to the parks (from the 'Theme Parks - Outlook' section):


Additional guest experience enhancements are planned including improving guest comfort in critical waiting areas through a mix of air conditioning and shade where appropriate

Also, this, in how they choose new attractions:


...an uncompromising approach to safety is integral... . This approach is manifest in the quality of attraction selection...

Page 29 mentions Village Roadshow's ownership in the Australian TopGolf sites has increased from 66.67% to 96.3% since the 13th of August 2018. The penultimate page mentions the final annual report is released on the 22nd of October 2018 with the annual meeting held on the 23rd of November 2018.

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Attendance in the second half was down 9.71% for their Gold Coast operations.  Their yield on tickets improved 16%...it was tracking at 30% in January and they've claimed their yield in July is up 35%.  Expect that to come down and attendance to fall again in the first half.

I don't buy what they're selling about their season pass sales.  If they were good they would have made very different statements.  If your ticket revenue was truly up 56% in July you'd be celebrating that a lot harder...don't think that is going to hold for the entire half at all-they were up 8% in the second half of FY2018.

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