SeaWorld Restructures Leadership Again but Looks to Be on the Upswing for the Future

Last week, SeaWorld Orlando announced a brand new leadership position, Chief Strategy Officer, and selected Walter Bogumil. Bogumil was a financial analyst at Walt Disney World and served financial positions at Sun International Resorts, Penn National Gaming and Affinity Gaming. This experience in theme parks and entertainment made him a good fit for CSO of SeaWorld Entertainment according to current interim CEO, John T. Reilly. After SeaWorld announced Bogumil's hiring, the company's stock shot up to $21.18 per share, a 52-week high. SeaWorld Entertainment and its stock plummeted in 2014 after the lack of visitors and bad press caused by Universal's Harry Potter lands and the documentary Blackfish respectively. While crowds and share prices were much higher in the past, SeaWorld Orlando seems to be on the upswing. SeaWorld Orlando has future plans to bring in more guests such as the expansion of a life-sized Sesame Street land, free beer on select dates this Summer and rumors of new resort hotels coming to the parks. Interim Executive Chairman of the SeaWorld Board of Directors and President of Zhonghong Group's American division who purchased 21% of SeaWorld in 2017, Yoshikazu Maruyama has hinted at plans to bring a SeaWorld theme park to China. Yet, SeaWorld Entertainment's leadership still raises some questions since the officers are so unseasoned. 5 out of the 8 Leadership Team members have worked at SeaWorld for under 12 months and only 1 has been with the company since 2016. While it is uncertain if SeaWorld can return to its past success, the company is taking strides to recover from Blackfish, low attendance and multiple leadership changes and has plans that might save SeaWorld Orlando in the future. Source: Orlando Weekly