'Blackfish' caused SeaWorld profit to dive by 84%

By MoneyTimes

Aug 07, 2015 06:59 PM EDT

SeaWorld, the pioneer and most sought-after refuge when it comes to entertainment and family entertainment, reported on Thursday an 84% drop in net income for its second quarter performance. 

Profit loss is attributed to discounts, lesser attendance, partly controversial over keeping whales in captivity and marketing expenses that increased in the quarter which ended on June 30.  Investors have no plans of pulling out by the executives' comments with stocks closed at $18.14 which is up by 4.2%.

The second quarter performance was also affected by existing "brand challenges" happening in California and Easter's earlier timing including the heavy rains in Texas.

Another reason that greatly caused the Sea World's profit to decline is the Blackfish Documentary.  It is a documentary made in 2013 about Tilikum, a killer whale in captivity.  It is a male orca with a length of 22.5 ft. long with a weight of 12,000 lbs.

The documentary largely focuses on the consequences if whales are kept in captivity.  Tilikum was involved in three deaths thinking about the fact that the orca was raised in SeaWorld parks. Footages used in the film came from news reports and interviews with trainers and witnesses who has visited and worked with the whale.

The company was also accused of sending an employee undercover posing as an activist and join People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals or PETA to gather secret information.

Despite numerous discounts, different promotions and marketing campaigns for its image improvement, attendance still fell to 2% to 6.48 million.  The park's net income plunged to 85% to $5.8 million and revenue has declined 3% to $391.6 million.

SeaWorld's Chief Executive Officer Joel Manby assured analysts that they will remain immovable with their efforts to defeat the challenges and improve the company's performance.

He has joined the company for four months now rehabilitating the operations, cutting down expenditures and improving the company's image by investing in the marketing campaign.

SeaWorld is very optimistic they could get back to the center stage with the positive feedback in regards with their ad campaign.  Customers will crowd again the theme park as the company will open a shark theme exhibit soon along with a coaster in 2016 which is according to the CEO the biggest, tallest and the fastest.

Also an exhibit in San Antonio will open its doors to customers enabling them to swim with dolphins in a setting close to nature.

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