Kings Dominon Being Sold?

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Aug 31, 2012
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Harrisonburg, VA
On my Twitter Feed two random people I don't know posted comments that popped us as retweets alluding to KD being sold.

I put zero percent stock in this in my opinion but it's interesting to come across.

I would post the direct Twitter Links but work computers you know :(

Twitter id's for anyone interested

@triLLikum
@BrianSterowski

Like I said I have no knowledge of who these people are and why they would make such A claim.

Just putting it out there.
 
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Aug 31, 2012
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Harrisonburg, VA
Zachary said:
Scrolling through their feeds, they both seem to act like 13 year-olds who share a particular desire to beat up Kings Dominion with blatant lies.

So yeah, bullshit flag.
I assumed as much scanning there feeds briefly on my phone.

Just don't know why someone would make such an outlandish claim.

If it would be on the market I would have assumed it would have been announced in some earnings call or other communication to investors to have any legitimacy to this claim.

Just my thoughts.
 

Zachary

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VACoasterFan said:
Just don't know why someone would make such an outlandish claim.
I gave up trying to understand people on the internet long ago. :p

VACoasterFan said:
If it would be on the market I would have assumed it would have been announced in some earnings call or other communication to investors to have any legitimacy to this claim.

Just my thoughts.
Totally agree. It's not like Cedar Fair is doing badly right now- the exact opposite actually. There's no reason for them to dump assets and KD would be far from the first asset to be dropped if such a time did come.
 
Apr 29, 2011
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Zachary said:
Scrolling through their feeds, they both seem to act like 13 year-olds who share a particular desire to beat up Kings Dominion with blatant lies.

So yeah, bullshit flag.
Total BS!

Having briefly scrolled through both of their Twitter feeds, I'm pretty sure I lost some valuable brain cells.  

 
Jul 16, 2013
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I actually know Brian, met him at the parks a few times. Not a bad dude by any means. But, he does indeed hate on KD rather hard. He tried to convince Screamscape and NBC12 up here in Richmond that Winter Storm Jonas took down a large portion of Rebel Yell's lift hill...

oh, well just take everything with a grain of salt these days, I guess.
 
Feb 14, 2019
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So this isn't a rumor as much as thought, but I don't know where else to stick it since it doesn't really conform to other threads either and I'm not sure it belongs in it's own:

What if the reason behind the increased focus on events and F&B at KD is not so much because CF is trying to compete and more because they're attempting to make the park more attractive to a buyer?

The line of thought is that KD has suffered by taking out Volcano and now Crypt without any known replacement. Volcano's site was leveled, which though indicates maybe a faster turnaround to build something else in it's spot, also could have been done to make it easier for a future buyer to make modifications and save them some cash in the process - what good is a SBNO ride that would cost serious $ to get operational in that scenario?

While the Coconut Shores addition is new, it's relatively not an expensive update compared to redoing the vacant Safari Village area with new rides/shops/food/attractions and/or theme.

By focusing on relatively cheap changes and additions that draw in attendance and in-park spending, the park could be seen as a good value for a buyout with an opportunity for the new owner to immediately be able to put their own stamp on it.

That's not saying that KI or Carowinds would be involved as I'm not as up to date with the ins and outs of those parks to place them as part of this scheme.
 
Nov 1, 2012
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So this isn't a rumor as much as thought, but I don't know where else to stick it since it doesn't really conform to other threads either and I'm not sure it belongs in it's own:

What if the reason behind the increased focus on events and F&B at KD is not so much because CF is trying to compete and more because they're attempting to make the park more attractive to a buyer?

The line of thought is that KD has suffered by taking out Volcano and now Crypt without any known replacement. Volcano's site was leveled, which though indicates maybe a faster turnaround to build something else in it's spot, also could have been done to make it easier for a future buyer to make modifications and save them some cash in the process - what good is a SBNO ride that would cost serious $ to get operational in that scenario?

While the Coconut Shores addition is new, it's relatively not an expensive update compared to redoing the vacant Safari Village area with new rides/shops/food/attractions and/or theme.

By focusing on relatively cheap changes and additions that draw in attendance and in-park spending, the park could be seen as a good value for a buyout with an opportunity for the new owner to immediately be able to put their own stamp on it.

That's not saying that KI or Carowinds would be involved as I'm not as up to date with the ins and outs of those parks to place them as part of this scheme.
I think you need to look at the larger picture, i.e. Cedar Fair.

For example, Cedar Point is getting 2 new food places in 2020. They are getting the return of a newly themed boat ride; a night parade for this year. And 2020 is their 150th anniversary.

KI has removed 1 coaster in the 2018-2019 off season and removing another major coaster, Vortex, this year. Of course Orion is opening this spring.

Carowinds is getting a racing mat slide and the Carnivale event for 2020. Thunder Road was removed to make way for the water park expansion in the last 2-3 years.

I see variations of what is happening at KD occuring in several CF parks over the last 2-3 years; so, I don't see KD sticking out as being the "ugly step-child" and potentially up for sale.

Remember that Cedar Fair corporate has been reviewing attractions across the park chain for the last 2-3 years. If these attractions are experiencing extensive down times; expensive/difficult to maintain; or simply not popular with low ridership, CF is getting rid of those attractions. This is now the current CF park chain corporate policy, not KD policy. The same corporate policy is in effect for more/varied entertainment and short term special events during different times in the season. Again, it is across the whole park chain.
 
Feb 14, 2019
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That's why I didn't think this needed to be it's own thread, I only have a view of what's happening at KD being local to it.
 

Nicole

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I would imagine that you might do whatever you find financially feasible that would make your property attractive to the most potential buyers. That could easily include ripping out as many unnecessary structures, as possible. Very few people probably want to buy land with a huge, broken metal/wood structure sitting there.
 
Feb 14, 2019
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Curious how well it was known that Volcano had major issues before they decided to tear it down? My guess is that no potential buyer would wanted to have spent the mountain of cash needed to fix the ride if they were informed of the issues with it. And it's highly likely the park would have been required to disclose to any buyer.
 
Mar 16, 2016
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Remember that Cedar Fair corporate has been reviewing attractions across the park chain for the last 2-3 years. If these attractions are experiencing extensive down times; expensive/difficult to maintain; or simply not popular with low ridership, CF is getting rid of those attractions. This is now the current CF park chain corporate policy, not KD policy. The same corporate policy is in effect for more/varied entertainment and short term special events during different times in the season. Again, it is across the whole park chain.
I wanted to quote this because I agree that they aren't really looking to sell IMO, but rather they are looking at the trends of where money is and trying to adopt to it. It seems as though we are swinging to fully interactive themed areas, as things like escape rooms are really taking off. CF is trying to remain flexible to move that way.

I would love to see them 'meld' the two a little better, and if you are going to go with fully interactive theme games; have rides be part of the experience.
 
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Nov 1, 2012
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I wanted to quote this because I agree that they aren't really looking to sell IMO, but rather they are looking at the trends of where money is and trying to adopt to it. It seems as though we are swinging to fully interactive themed areas, as things like escape rooms are really taking off. CF is trying to remain flexible to move that way.

I would love to see them 'meld' the two a little better, and if you are going to go with fully interactive theme games; have rides be part of the experience.
Given the Carowinds 2020 survey on potential themed makeovers on existing park areas and KD's generic hints last year and this year concerning "The Jungle" for a potential partial/whole makeover of safari village, maybe the latest trend for Cedar Fair is pushing certain parks back toward "themed".
 
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Nov 30, 2018
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KD is a tricky investment for Cedar Fair in that they don't have a local monopoly and there isn't much cross-over opportunities for increasing revenue between KD and other Cedar Fair parks - you could say this about a number of Cedar Fair and Six Flags parks. In that more competitive environment you really only have a couple investment options:
1. Go in big on investments and try to generate big returns with higher attendance and greater patron revenue. KD would need to invest a lot from where they currently are to deal with their competitor down in Williamsburg.
2. Keep costs down and limit investments to run a park that keeps enough patrons coming through the door and is cash flow positive.

For KD to go big I think would involve more than just rides and events at the park. They would need to figure out investments for the Doswell area that could drive additional attendance and cross-spending - e.g. a resort hotel with indoor water park or a nice lifestyle or outlet mall. This isn't really in Cedar Fair's type of business, so another real estate investor would probably be needed to make that work such as Triple Five Group (Mall of America, American Dream).
 
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Joe

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An investor presentation CF made a few years ago shows that KD is middle-of-the-pack among CF parks in terms of revenue. In fact, although it doesn’t have Carowinds’ potential for as much future growth, it has roughly the same revenue as Carowinds. KD would be a strange choice among the CF parks to sell. Plus, the company has never sold an actual theme park (except Knott’s Mall Of America park in the 90s), so there’s no precedent to suggest a sale.

The recent ride closures seem to me to be nothing more than a combination of CF’s initiative to kill all the unpopular and unreliable rides in the chain, and the Paramount prototypes reaching the end of their service lives.
 
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Nov 30, 2018
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Carowinds has no real competition for huge swaths of North Carolina, whereas KD has competition in all directions. If Cedar Fair can't appropriately invest and compete with KD's property, than a sale may make sense, vice losing money or seeing the park value depreciate.
 
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