Dreamworld’s tiger cubs. Picture: Nigel Hallett
Dreamworld’s tiger cubs. Picture: Nigel Hallett

Dreamworld visitors coming back

THEME parks and entertainment centres operator Ardent Leisure expects to trade profitably in the second half of the financial year as attendances improve at the Dreamworld theme park on the Gold Coast.

Visitor numbers have slowly been recovering since their dramatic fall following a fatal accident there in October 2016.

Ardent booked a net loss of $15.6 million for the period from July 1 to December 26 of $15.6 million - less than a third of its $49.3 million net loss for the six months to December 31, 2016.

The result - for 179 days, compared to the previous first-half's 184 days - includes an impairment charge on Dreamworld of $22.8 million, that was flagged earlier in February.

But the group says it expects to trade profitably in the second half, generating both positive earnings and profit.

Ardent's first-half revenue fell 16.3 per cent to $265.55 million, mainly due to the sale of the group's health clubs and marinas businesses. Pro-forma revenue was down 12.1 per cent at $278.9 million, after accounting for the varied period of the half-year.

The company kept its interim dividend at two cents a share. Ardent Leisure shares were 3.25 cents, or 1.7 per cent higher at $1.9175 late morning on Monday.

News Corp Australia