Kings Island owner Cedar Fair announces $8B merger with Six Flags

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Cedar Fair, the parent company of Cedar Point and Kings Island, will merge with Six Flags, the company announced Thursday morning.

Cedar Fair and Six Flags Entertainment Corporation announced they will enter into a definitive merger agreement; the combined company will be valued at roughly $8 billion, based on both companies’ debt and equity values as of Oct. 31, according to Cedar Fair.

The merger was unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors for both companies.

“Our merger with Six Flags will bring together two of North America’s iconic amusement park companies to establish a highly diversified footprint and a more robust operating model to enhance park offerings and performance,” said Richard Zimmerman, president and chief executive officer of Cedar Fair, in a press release. “Together, we will have an expanded and complementary portfolio of attractive assets and intellectual property to deliver engaging entertainment experiences for guests. The combination also creates an enhanced financial profile with strong cash flow generation to accelerate investments in our parks to delight our guests, driving increased levels of demand and in-park value and spending. I have great respect for the Six Flags team and look forward to joining forces as we embark on this next chapter together.”

Once the merger is complete, the combined company will have a portfolio of 27 amusement parks, 15 water parks and 9 resort properties across 17 states in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

Currently, Cedar Fair owns 11 amusement parks, while Six Flags owns 27.

The merger will also mean intellectual property will open up to Cedar Fair; the combined company will have entertainment options ranging from Looney Tunes to DC Comics to Cedar Fair’s already owned access to Peanuts imagery.

“The combination of Six Flags and Cedar Fair will redefine our guests’ amusement park experience as we combine the best of both companies,” added Selim Bassoul, president and chief executive officer of Six Flags, in a press release. “Six Flags and Cedar Fair share a strong cultural alignment, operating philosophy, and steadfast commitment to providing consumers with thrilling experiences. By combining our operational models and technology platforms, we expect to accelerate our transformation activities and unlock new potential for our parks. We are excited to unite the Cedar Fair and Six Flags teams to capitalize on the tremendous growth opportunities and operational efficiencies of our combined platform for the benefit of our guests, shareholders, employees, and other stakeholders.”

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