Six Flags Entertainment Corporation ("Six Flags") today announced that Alexander "Al" Weber, Jr., former President and CEO of Paramount Parks, Inc., has been named President and Interim Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. The Company is retaining a leading executive search firm and will consider both internal and external candidates to serve as Chief Executive Officer on a permanent basis.
The Company also today announced Mark Shapiro, the Company's former President and Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors, is no longer with the Company.
Al Weber has 40 years of experience in the regional theme park business. He has successfully implemented new business strategies, organizational improvements and growth initiatives. Previously, Weber served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Palace Entertainment, LLC, the largest water park and family entertainment center company in the United States. Prior to that, Weber served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Paramount Parks, Inc from 2002 to 2006. Weber received a Bachelor's Degree in Liberal Arts and Master's Degree in Business Administration from Xavier University, and a Doctorate in Organization and Management from Capella University.
Here is hoping what, in my opinion, Shapiro did right (making the parks friendlier and cleaner overall) remains, yet here's also hoping what he did wrong (mainly making what I consider illogical additions to parks) changes.
I don't think it would affect Chang at all, but one thing that always made me wonder with Paramount Parks was their aversion to big rides. Remember, no Paramount park ever had a Hyper Coaster until Cedar Fair took over, out of the 5 paramount parks there were a total of 4 B&M coasters at only 2 of their parks, they managed to completely trash PGA, they always installed very low capacity or gimmicky coasters(or both rolled into one)... Volcano, Hypersonic, Stealth, Italian Job, Invertigo's, Outer LIMits, etc, and those were going into parks with 3+ million annual attendance. Now I don't know if that was the fault of this Al Weber or if it was Paramount Corporate. Not saying this isn't good for SF, but there's definitely a wait and see approach that needs to be taken.
Well, I guess this is a wait and see. I am excited to see a CEO that has great experience, and I believe this shouldn't make any changes to Chang plans. I felt this was almost inevitable when Snyder was pulled out. I am happy that we have a CEO that values thrills, and understands their importance. Maybe more exhillirating rides, ala, Mr. Freeze?
I dont care if Santa Claus was chosen to run Six Flags, the fact remains the company is still well over a billion dollars in debt. So unless Mr. Weber wants to run Six Flags into the ground and layoff thousands of people, He's not going to start building multi-million dollar roller coasters from B&M and Premier etc.
[quote="FParker185"]I don't think it would affect Chang at all, but one thing that always made me wonder with Paramount Parks was their aversion to big rides. Remember, no Paramount park ever had a Hyper Coaster until Cedar Fair took over, out of the 5 paramount parks there were a total of 4 B&M coasters at only 2 of their parks, they managed to completely trash PGA, they always installed very low capacity or gimmicky coasters(or both rolled into one)... Volcano, Hypersonic, Stealth, Italian Job, Invertigo's, Outer LIMits, etc, and those were going into parks with 3+ million annual attendance. Now I don't know if that was the fault of this Al Weber or if it was Paramount Corporate. Not saying this isn't good for SF, but there's definitely a wait and see approach that needs to be taken.[/quote]
Volcano, Hypersonic, Stealth, Invertigo's, and Outer Limits were all Built LONG Before Weber took over. It's like Blaming Shapiro for DejaVu.
Also BASED on a 2003 Theme Park Attendance Report according to Amusement Business on the Paramount Parks; Only Kings Island had over 3 Million.
PCW- 2.6m PC- 1.7m PGAm- 1.9m PKD- 2.1m PKI- 3.2m
They also Didn't add Big Rides for awhile cause as Cedar Fair knows, Prototypes don't always Work correctly. Or Maybe it's Just Intamin, I Mean how do you screw up a Log Flume?
Why would this affect Chang? The plans are and have been in place for a while. A ride like Chang needs space that takes time and thought to figure out. They chose Gurnee, IL and a good portion of the ride is already here. If Chang was still in SFKK it would be a different story but the fact is a new CEO has other things to worry about than a relocated 12 year old B&M.
Oh drat, no more Shapiro. Come on guys, we need another new sign for Jester's Wild Ride. The 2nd sign isn't good enough. Any new guy is going to improve Mark Shapiro - an ESPN - only cares about marketing type of guy, and pretends he knows Disney World because ESPN is related to Disney through ABC.
The first thing I would do if I were the new guy is repeal the locker fee. Think about this. SFGAm had to close down several games in County Fair because of less people playing the games. I bet you this has a lot to do with the locker fee, and people thinking why should I even play if I can't take it on the ride for free.
There have been a lot of buses with kids who can't do something like this. It's also incovenience of going out of the park. Some might not even go out of the park per day. On top of it, the cheap parking lot is way far in left field. It's not like hop, skip, and jump to go out, and go in right away.
I don't have a locker problem, but I imagine a lot of people do have a problem with this, and I think it's hurting them as I said - them taking away a bunch of games in County Fair Games. Sure, they put MagiQuest in the area, but why? If they were making enough money in that area, they wouldn't need MagiQuest.
Some of you are saying that SF can only get better now because Shapiro had little experience in the theme park business. Do you guys know what Burke's (CEO before Shapiro) backround was in parks or entertainment for that matter? ZERO!!!!
The last group of bigshots before Shapiro's group were bankers, lawyers, and accountants. The only guy on Burke's board that had any experience was Gary Story (who started out as an hourly seasonal and worked his way up).
Shapiro had more experience when he came on board then Burke and seemed to understand that if you have no money, you don't go out and max out the credit cards.
I finally retired the Sarah Palin signature because she is now 100% irrelevant.
I must admit, Shapiro was very good financial, he knew what to do to make money, that's why I was surprised that under bankruptcy he's removed. He left ESPN, was removed from Six Flags, I wonder what might be next for him.
Although, personally, I feel that he didn't exactly know how to manage the importance of parks/ how or what attractions parks should receive.