Sentiment is turning more positive on SeaWorld Entertainment Inc (NYSE:SEAS) stock performance based on the company’s upcoming attractions.
Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) recently changed SeaWorld Entertainment’s rating from sell to neutral. The change happened on Tuesday and it is believed to have been fueled by the attractions that the company plans to set up this year. The analyst firm believes that the upcoming attractions will lead to significantly more visitors, thus boosting the risk/reward profile. SeaWorld still has a lot of changes to implement but Goldman Sachs analysts are optimistic about the new attractions, thus the hold rating.
“With shares pulling back in the past three months, the company’s valuation looks more reasonable,” stated analysts.
The marine mammal theme park has been having a hard time trying to attract audiences especially after the changes in public view about marine mammal captivity. Things have been rather slow for SeaWorld especially after a 2013 documentary that depicted a negative image about how the company treats the animals in its custody. The film’s main focus also happened to be on killer whales.
SeaWorld agreed to stop breeding killer whales and its new plan involves changing its shows to focus on education rather than entertainment. However, it is yet to conform to the requests of animal advocates on moving its whales to seaside sanctuaries. The company recently announced that it plans to offer a behind-the-scenes package that will allow visitors to have a close encounter with the killer whales at the Orlando theme park.
The tour will last 60 minutes and it will feature face to face encounters with the whales behind a glass barrier. It will also include talks with some of the SeaWorld whale trainers.
The company’s stock has tanked by 12 percent over the past three months. However, analysts are optimistic that the new changes will bring about a significant improvement in the performance of the stock. Despite this, SeaWorld still has a lot of challenges to overcome, such as weak internal visitation and competition.
SeaWorld stock closed the latest trading session on Tuesday at $14.35.