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  1. #1

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    Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006

    http://www.fool.com/news/commentary/...ry06030903.htm

    I thought this was the most interesting part:

    The public will love Six Flags again

    Six Flags is abolishing the old general-manager bonus plan that rewarded park executives based exclusively on performance according to earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA). That plan contributed to stingy operators cutting costs late in the season at the expense of park guests. Now, the new bonus system will introduce gauges such as revenues generated per guest, patron satisfaction, and park cleanliness to go along with operating profits at the park level.

    Six Flags is also contracting with SASI Consulting, a company that helped improve operations at four of the company's parks recently, to develop a universal training program. The old regime didn't emphasize training, probably figuring that the high turnover of young seasonal hires wasn't a group worth investing in. Big mistake. And a big opportunity for Shapiro.
    The real smiles

    Something special is happening at Six Flags. You don't see it right now, but just wait until it's early August, and your co-worker has a picture of his or her daughter with Wonder Woman taken at Six Flags. Just wait until your next visit, when you find yourself amazed that the restrooms are being tended to on an hourly basis, the "streetmosphere" is thickly enjoyable, and you're finding yourself smiling again -- in a Six Flags park.

    That smile won't be faked.


  2. #2

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    Re: Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006

    This is great news! It's like we're experiencing a theme park Rennaissance here in Southern California. First, the DLR gets the white glove treatment right before the 50th, now they're trying to pull SFMM back together. Add in the new additions to the USH tram tour, and that gives us a lot to look forward to in the next year or two.

    So amidst all this good news, I'm curious. Why the sudden change in theme park culture? Are other parks looking at Disneyland as the benchmark and just trying to emulate its successes of the last year? Or do we just attribute it to pixey dust in the So Cal drinking water?
    "I could never convince the financiers that Disneyland was feasible because dreams offer too little collateral"

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  3. #3

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    Re: Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006


    Six Flags is abolishing the old general-manager bonus plan that rewarded park executives based exclusively on performance according to earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA). That plan contributed to stingy operators cutting costs late in the season at the expense of park guests. Now, the new bonus system will introduce gauges such as revenues generated per guest, patron satisfaction, and park cleanliness to go along with operating profits at the park level.

    I think that seasonal passes probably contributed to cutting of costs late, as the percentage of park-goers with seasonal passes likely increases as the season winds down.
    Those GM's who obsessively checked their general ledgers on a daily basis probably had no choice, assuming their primary goal was their bonus.

    So, who would make the hard decision to drop seasonal passes (or increase their prices)? I take it that would be Mr Shapiro.
    The "crisis" might not be as bad as DL's, since DL has annual passes and is (usually) open 365 days per year. the AP revenue is spread out over the year, so the gate revenue drop might not be as noticeable in a G/L.
    "Here You Leave the World of California Today and Enter the World of, um, er, California Today."

  4. #4

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    Re: Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006

    It's funny that it seems all of the SoCal parks are moving up yet the quality at Knott's is going down.

    Sad really.


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    Re: Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006

    Quote Originally Posted by E-ticket
    So amidst all this good news, I'm curious. Why the sudden change in theme park culture?
    The big Reason SFMM is big with the sudden changes is because of the new CEO. Who is tring to make an ok theme park into a GREAT theme park. and i am with him all the way. Better bathrooms Greatest thing ever.
    If life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade. Then find someone who's life has given them vodka and have a party.

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    The best kind of Prize is a surprise! Hehehe

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  6. #6

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    Re: Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006

    From this article and a discussion on the other Six flags thread that is close to this in content, I think you will begin to see systemic changes begin this summer, but the real pay off is going to be next year... Think of it like the way DL prepared for the 50'th...

    I am seriously considering investing in six flags.. but that 2 billion in debt scares me away... That is a lot of dept... One of the things Six Flags can do is to open more parks durring the holidays to a limited capacity... This might help the books look healthier...
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    Re: Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006

    I will be going to Six Flags during Aerospace night and I will see how things are then. This is the only time I go to magic mountain, limited number of people (about 5k, no regular park guests) in the gates makes for double rides on all coasters with minimal waits.

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    Re: Motley Fool - Six Surprises for Six Flags in 2006

    Quote Originally Posted by cellarhound
    From this article and a discussion on the other Six flags thread that is close to this in content, I think you will begin to see systemic changes begin this summer, but the real pay off is going to be next year... Think of it like the way DL prepared for the 50'th...

    I am seriously considering investing in six flags.. but that 2 billion in debt scares me away... That is a lot of dept... One of the things Six Flags can do is to open more parks durring the holidays to a limited capacity... This might help the books look healthier...
    You will ask a stupid question at the shareholder meeting, right? What other reason is there to buy the stock?
    "Here You Leave the World of California Today and Enter the World of, um, er, California Today."

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