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$70 million Queensland Government lifeline drives Ardent Leisure’s Dreamworld reopening announcement
Ardent Leisure has today announced that it is to implement a staged reopening of its Gold Coast attractions Dreamworld and WhiteWater World, with both parks expected to recommence operations as of mid-September ahead of the next school holidays.
The announcement comes in the wake of the business securing $70 million from a financial assistance package for Gold Coast theme parks announced by the Queensland Government.
Commenting on the backing, Ardent Leisure Theme Parks and Attractions Chief Executive, John Osborne stated “we appreciate the Queensland Government’s strong recognition of the important role that the theme park industry plays in the economic development of Queensland and the broader tourism industry in Australia.
“The Queensland Government’s foresight in providing this financial assistance package will enable Ardent to re-open its iconic theme parks, continue to employ hundreds of people and continue to invest in future tourism infrastructure and create more local jobs.
“We are very excited about welcoming back our valued team members and loyal guests and have already commenced preparations for the re-opening of our parks, including the implementation of our Queensland Health approved COVIDSafe Plan.”
In a statement provided to the Australian Stock Exchange today, the company said it had secured a three-year loan valued at $66.9 million and a $3 million grant that will be used to fund working capital and approved capital expenditure.
The loan is mutually exclusive from other loan facilities that are supporting Ardent Leisure’s US Main Event business.
Ardent Leisure Chairman Dr Gary Weiss said the funding was recognition of how important the theme park industry was to the Gold Coast economy, noting “the Queensland Government’s foresight in providing this financial assistance package will enable Ardent to reopen its iconic theme parks, continue to employ hundreds of people and, once the COVID-19 is behind us, continue to invest future tourism infrastructure and create more local jobs.”
The September re-opening date for Dreamworld and WhiteWater World will be confirmed over the next week.
The company’s SkyPoint Observation Deck and Climb located in Surfers Paradise have already reopened.
Image: Dreamworld's SkyVoyager, which opened last year.
29th July 2020 - Ardent Leisure pleads guilty over 2016 Dreamworld ride deaths
10th July 2020 - Coronavirus impact sees Dreamworld make 50 positions redundant
8th February 2020 - Dreamworld permanently closes Rocky Hollow Log Ride
7th February 2020 - Dreamworld enjoys successful peak season
17th October 2019 - Ardent Leisure raises Dreamworld ticket costs
8th April 2019 - Ardent Leisure borrows $225 million for attractions investment
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