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Ardent Leisure reports slower than expected growth in Dreamworld visitation

Ardent Leisure reports slower than expected growth in Dreamworld visitation
February 2, 2018

Revealing the birth of two new Tiger cubs today at Dreamworld’s Tiger Island today, parent company Ardent Leisure has also revealed a significant rise in attendance at the Gold Coast theme park.

Attendances at Dreamworld were up 41.2% and revenue was up 70.6% between 10th December 2017 and 31st January 2018 compared with the same period last year. This comparative period was chosen due to Dreamworld having reopened on 10th December 2016 following four fatalities on its Thunder River Rapids Ride.

While the attendance growth has been encouraging, Ardent Leisure today reported that the growth was slower than expected, forcing the company to write down the value of its theme parks division by up to $25 million.

In a statement to the ASX, Ardent Leisure Chairman Gary Weiss advised “the recovery in attendance at the theme park has been slower than originally projected.

“As a result, the group expects to book a further non-cash, pre-tax valuation impairment charge in the range of $15 million to $25 million in its accounts for the first half of FY18.”

The company said aside from the writedown in value, its theme parks business was expected to break even for the first half of the financial year and finish in the black for its full-year results.

Ardent currently intends to report its results for the first half of FY18 on Monday 26th February 2018.

In 2016/17 Ardent’s theme parks revenue fell by $37 million to $71 million and earnings by a similar amount, resulting in a loss for the year of $3.4 million.

On a more positive note, the birth of two female tiger cubs at Tiger Island was announced, a development that will help further support the Dreamworld Wildlife Foundation’s global conservation initiatives for tigers in the wild.

Mum, Nika, gave birth to yet to be named sister cubs weighing a healthy 1.4kg and 1.6kg, on Wednesday 24th January at 9.40am and 10.50am.

Dreamworld veterinary teams have been watching Nika and her cubs around the clock and they are all doing well.

The birth heralds the first tiger birth at Dreamworld since 2015 and the sixth litter born at Dreamworld since Tiger Island opened in 1995.

The cubs will remain in the Tiger Island nursery den for the next two weeks and are then expected to make their first public appearance later this month.

Dreamworld’s General Manager of Life Sciences, Al Mucci, said the birth of the cubs marked another important step forward in the global tiger conservation movement, supported by the Dreamworld Wildlife Foundation.

Mucci advised “(this) is a perfect time for Dreamworld to be promoting the tiger conservation message.

“These two beautiful cubs will be fantastic global ambassadors for their endangered cousins in the wild.

“We’re very proud of the fact the Dreamworld Wildlife Foundation is one of the world’s largest financial contributors to wild tiger conservation.

“Tiger programs are a core component of the tiger conservation movement and we plan on these two girls growing up to be mums of their own, as part of breeding programs with our other Australian zoo partners.” 

Images: The two female tiger cubs born at Tiger Island in late January (top) and Ardent Leisure Chairman Gary Weiss (below).

25th January 2018 - DREAMWORLD REOPENS POPULAR WATER RIDE 

20th December 2017 - ARDENT LEISURE SELLS BOWLING CENTRES DIVISION FOR $160 MILLION

9th November 2017 - ARDENT LEISURE CHIEF EXECUTIVE SIMON KELLY TO LEAVE AFTER JUST FOUR MONTHS IN ROLE

9th November 2017 - DREAMWORLD REJECTS CRITICISM OF ANIMAL CARE AT TIGER ISLAND ATTRACTION

26th October 2017 - DREAMWORLD MARKS RIDE TRAGEDY ANNIVERSARY WITH QUIET STAFF COMMEMORATION

21st October 2017 - QUEENSLAND POLICE SAY NO STAFF SHOULD BE PROSECUTED OVER 2016 DREAMWORLD DEATHS 

16th October 2017 - QUEENSLAND PARLIAMENT PASSES INDUSTRIAL MANSLAUGHTER LAWS IN WAKE OF DREAMWORLD FATALITIES

29th September 2017 - GARY WEISS TAKES ON CHAIRMAN’S ROLE AT ARDENT LEISURE

14th September 2017 - DREAMWORLD TO REMOVE MOUNTAIN SURROUNDING ITS EUREKA MOUNTAIN MINE RIDE

4th September 2017 - ARDENT LEISURE INVITES REBEL SHAREHOLDERS TO JOIN BOARD

14th February 2017 - DREAMWORLD BACKS KOALA CONSERVATION WITH NEW BREEDING PROGRAM

18th September 2016 - DREAMWORLD OPENS NEW LOOK TIGER ISLAND 

29th December 2015 - DREAMWORLD UNVEILS TWO NEWLY BORN CUBS AT TIGER ISLAND 


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