Monday, March 16, 2009

Yet Another Six Flags Update

More news on Six Flags, some good some not so good... First, I reprint what Six Flags PR department would like ZH's readers to know, so we present that with no comment:

Dear Tyler,

I hope this email finds you doing well this afternoon, here is another update for you.

I know you and your readers have been following news about Six Flags recently and I wanted to make sure you had the opportunity to listen in on our Q4 2008 earnings call this morning. If you missed the call , here is a link to the webcast which will be archived for the next few months.

Important items discussed by our CEO and CFO during the call:
  • By every measure, 2008 was the best year in the history of Six Flags.
  • Our company achieved every key objective established in the three-year turnaround plan, including improving the parks, achieving positive cash flow for the first time, and generating revenue of approximately $59 million in 2008.
  • 2008 revenue represented an increase of 53% over the previous year.
I know you have followed reports regarding Six Flag’s balance sheet issues, and the call addressed that issue as well. With more than $200 million cash on hand, the back-office financial restructuring issues will be invisible to guests visiting our parks this season. What guests will see when they go to Six Flags will be new rides and attractions; a friendly, well-trained staff; and lots of opportunities for a great day of family fun. With longer hours, longer seasons, and new low prices, 2009 should be another incredible year.

Please let me know if you have any questions about the earnings call or Six Flags in general.

[edited out]
Six Flags Inc.

I appreciate Six Flags' view.

The not so good news come out via, in a piece titled "Six Flags CEO Says Debt holder Won't Talk."
A key holder of Six Flags Inc.'s debt is holding up negotiations to restructure the debt, the company's president and chief executive told investors Monday.

CEO Mark Shapiro did not name the debt holder, which he said holds a "significant amount" of the company's senior notes due in 2010. But he said it "has refused to meet" to renegotiate the debt.

"The auto companies have an easier time getting a meeting with the United Auto Workers than I do of getting a meeting with this particular portfolio fund manager," Shapiro said.

The New York-based company said in its annual report last week that a Chapter 11 filing is possible if it doesn't restructure its debt.

The company's first looming obligation is to holders of its preferred income redeemable shares, or PIERS, which will be due more than $300 million when the shares mature on Aug. 15.

Six Flags has said it does not expect to have enough cash to meet that obligation.

"We simply can't refinance our debt with the markets being what they are and we can't sell excess real estate in this environment and expect to get something even close to full value," Shapiro said.

Shapiro disclosed that the company has retained investment banking firm Houlihan Lokey financial advisers to help restructure the company's balance sheet to reduce debt and expects any out-of-court solution to include a "significant debt-for-equity exchange."

Shapiro said restructuring debt — in court or outside — will not affect the experience visitors have at its theme parks and the company plans a "heavy advertising and communications blitz" to get that message to the public.

We hope this "particular bond manager" (how's Boston these days?) comes to his senses and realizes that bored teenagers throughout the country need their zero G dives, wooden rollercoasters and not so cheap hot dogs and soda beverages to pass the time without the distraction of a potential looming bankruptcy filing. So next time you get a call from 212-652-9xxx please pick up the phone.

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Anonymous said...

Come on Mr Bondholder, think of the children. What's better than spending $10 on popcorn and $8 on a hotdog only to throw them up 20 mins later as you approach negative 2Gs !!

Thanks for the update Tyler, gotta keep em honest.

Anonymous said...

What is the bondholder's upside? Does he hold protection (CDS) and basically wants Ch.7 so that he could provide DIP financing and scoop up more?

Tyler Durden said...

that is a distinct possibility

nnjg said...

the upside is being able to assert 100% of your claim post-petition, rather than agreeing to one of these coercive exchange offers that both reduces your claim as well as receives securities of dubious value, especially if any pre-petition deal would allow for any value to go to the prefs

Crisatunity said...

Six Flags in Arlington, TX is angling to sell booze this year. Sweaty smelly hicks, 100+ degree temps and booze. What could go wrong? This particular venue is a dead member of their portfolio.

Stacey said...

Thanks for the Six Flags update... Six flags theme parks and water parks both are right place for enjoyments...