(November 21, 2000) The LB Aquarium of the Pacific today announced plans to refinance its bonds.
In a written press release, the Aquarium, a non-profit organization, announced a "business plan to ensure future stability that will include re-financing the Aquarium's bonds, aggressive fundraising and sponsorship solicitations, increased advertising and enhancing the visitor experience."
The release quoted Aquarium chief operating officer Tammie Brailsford, who called the refinancing "the responsible course of action from a business perspective, as it will reduce our debt payments." She added, "This is just one element in our milti-faceted plan that will result in a strong foundation for the Aquarium to continue its missions of education and conservation."
The Aquarium release further stated:
Although the fiscal year 2000 audit will not be finished until year-end, based on preliminary figures, the Aquarium is able to announce that has met its projected attendance figures of 1.1 million and has a 20% "EBITDA" operating margin [earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization].
The Aquarium has made all bond payments in full and on-time without utilizing bond reserves. In the recent results of a study undertaken by consulting firm Management Resources, specializing in attraction business services, it was determined that the Aquarium of the Pacific is among the most efficiently run aquariums in the nation.
Based on its multi-faceted business plan under implementation, the Aquarium has a balanced budget for fiscal year 2001. The Aquarium is currently working with the City of Long Beach on its bond re-fiancing process. The Aquarium will continue to stay independent both in terms of its operations and finances.
The Aquarium is also currently working on new behind-the-scenes tours and adventures, increased educational outreach, enhanced and more frequent animal presentations, and adding new revenue-generating activities as well as a variety of other programs. The Aquarium will also create a new and exciting entrance for guests. During this entire process,the Aquarium will continue its normal hours and operations.
In October, LBReport.com posted the Aquarium's latest quarterly report at LB Aquarium Financial Report (in .pdf form), click here
LBReport.com has also reported on efforts to use state resources to aid the Aquarium. See Governor Vetoes Lowenthal Bill That Would Have Let Certain CA Aquariums Seek State Educational Grants
The LB Aquarium will receive $500,000 in budgeted state taxpayer dollars in the 2000-2001 fiscal year.