SeaWorld Attendance and Revenue Continues to Decline - NBC 7 San Diego

SeaWorld Attendance and Revenue Continues to Decline

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    The Art of the Getaway
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    A female killer whale, Moana, center, jumps with killer whales of the animal exhibition park Marineland in Antibes, southern France, Saturday, March 17, 2012. Moana celebrates today her first birthday. The baby killer whale was born by artificial insemination with the sperm from "Ulysses", a killer whale of the Seaworld aquatic park at San Diego in USA. (AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau)

    Attendance and revenue at SeaWorld continued to decline in the fourth quarter of 2014, according to an earnings report from SeaWorld Entertainment.

    The report shows 22.4 million people visited SeaWorld parks last year, compared with 23.4 million in 2013.

    In the fourth quarter of 2014, SeaWorld reported $264.5 million in revenue, compared with $272 the previous year.

    The continued decline in business has followed the 2013 release of the documentary “Blackfish,” which was critical of SeaWorld’s handling of killer whales.

    In December, more than 300 SeaWorld employees were laid off and the CEO of SeaWorld Entertainment stepped down. The company said it was attempting to cut about $50 million by the end of this year.

    Overall in 2014, attendance dropped 4 percent.

    SeaWorld has long defended its practices and last year announced the construction of larger environments for animals, namely Orcas, and that it would fund research programs to protect whales in the wild.

    The company also said Thursday that it expects to select a new CEO within the next six to nine months, according to published reports.