Six Flags reports record revenue to open 2018

Elementary school students keep their eyes on a rubber chicken held up by a court jester during the fourth grade Medieval Times and Renaissance Faire at Trinity Classical Academy on Friday, March 31, 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

The year-round operating schedule at Magic Mountain has already provided a boost to Six Flags Entertainment Corporation’s bottom line.

The world’s largest regional theme park company in a Tuesday news release announced a 30-percent increase in revenue for the first quarter of 2018, thanks largely to a 27-percent rise in attendance and growing membership in the company’s Active Pass Base membership program.

Specifically, Six Flags singled out Magic Mountain, which moved to a 365-day schedule for this year, and Hurricane Harbor Mexico, which wasn’t open during the first quarter of 2017, as catalysts for the attendance spike.

Six Flags ended the first quarter with a record-high $129 million, up $29 million from the opening quarter of 2017.

“We are firing on all cylinders as we made excellent progress in the quarter against each of our five growth initiatives,” Six Flags President and CEO Jim Reid-Anderson said in the release. “With our record-high Active Pass Base, ongoing price increases across all ticket and culinary programs, growing dining pass penetration, new water park openings and new international licensing agreements, we are poised to deliver another record year of financial performance in 2018.”

After previously operating for 250 days a year, Magic Mountain moved to a year-round schedule for 2018. The park, however, lost two days in March due to an intense storm that soaked the Santa Clarita Valley with intense rain.

The planned summer opening of the world’s tallest pendulum ride, CraZanity, should motivate thrill-seekers to visit Magic Mountain, too. The frisbee-style ride will reach heights of 170 feet, or the equivalent of a 17-story building, at speeds up to 75 mph.

Overall, Six Flags attendance rose to 2.4 million guests during the first quarter, while Active Pass Base membership increased 10 percent from 2017, according to the release.
Six Flags also benefited from a slight increase in total guest spending per capita, up $1.78, or 4 percent, to $46.07, from a year ago.

The booming first quarter followed Six Flags’ eighth consecutive year of record financial performance, announced by the company in February. Revenue grew $40 million, or 3 percent, to $1.4 billion in 2017, when 30.4 million guests visited Six Flags properties.

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