Kings Dominion owner rejects SeaWorld’s $ 3 billion buyout offer

RICHMAND, Virginia (WRIC) – Owner of Kings Dominion has rejected a $ 3.5 billion buyout bid from SeaWorld Entertainment Inc.

SeaWorld Entertainment, which owns Busch Gardens Williamsburg, has made an unsolicited non-binding offer to acquire Cedar Fair Entertainment, the operator of Kings Dominion in Hanover, and several other theme parks across the country.

“The initial offer was $ 60 per unit, which they then informally increased to $ 63 per unit,” said Richard Zimmerman, CEO of Cedar Fair, during a call to investors on Wednesday. With the company 57 million shares outstandingthe deal would cost close to $ 3.6 billion.

“Our board, along with its external consultants, carefully evaluated the proposal and determined that it was not in the interests of the company and its shareholders,” Zimmerman continued. “As we will discuss this morning, the board and management have a high degree of confidence in our long-term strategic plan.

SeaWorld owns and operates several theme parks in the United States, including SeaWorld Parks in Florida, California and Texas. In addition to being the parent company of Busch Gardens Williamsburg, it also manages Water Country USA in Williamsburg.

SeaWorld did not immediately respond to an 8News interview request on Thursday, but the company released a statement on the deal on Wednesday.

“In response to inquiries from various stakeholders, we confirm that our offer to acquire Cedar Fair has been rejected,” SeaWorld said in a statement. “Unfortunately, we don’t see a way to the transaction.”

Shares of Cedar Fair closed on Wednesday at $ 58.35 per share. This currently at $ 57.75 per share. Shares of SeaWorld rose to more than $ 71 a share on Wednesday, but so be it currently stands at $ 69.14 per share.

“We look forward to resuming the sustainable distribution of our shareholders, and we are confident that further successful implementation of our plan will lead to a significant increase in the cost of rations,” Zimmerman told investors on Wednesday.

“However, the council is open and always committed to acting in the interests of the shareholders. They will continue to consider any opportunities to create value for the owners of our shares. As for SeaWorld’s proposal, we will not have any additional comments at this time. “

As Zimmerman noted at a conference with investors, Cedar Fair did not comment on the refusal and rejected a request for an interview on Thursday.

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