LONDON: Dubai theme-park operator DXB Entertainments saw an 11 percent drop in visitors in the first quarter of 2019 — but says it is looking for growth in international guests as it aims to break even next year.
The the first phase of the company’s main asset — where attractions include Bollywood Parks and Legoland — opened in 2016.
DXB Entertainments said in a statement Tuesday that its attractions saw 760,000 visitors in the first quarter of 2019, an 11 percent decline on the year-ago period.
Revenues for the quarter stood at 142 million dirhams ($38.7 million), an 18 percent decline on last year, while the company’s net loss grew by 3 percent to 216 million dirhams.
Despite the drop in top-line figures, the company said its average hotel occupancy rose to 72 percent from 62 percent, while a growth in international guests means that the latter group now represents 45 percent of visitors.
“Not unexpectedly we have seen a reduction in this quarter’s visitor numbers compared to last year, a typical pattern for a theme park in its second year as the domestic target market consolidates to a core of repeat visitors. Our job now is to maximize the revenue potential of our established domestic base whilst growing our international visitor numbers,” said Mohamed Almulla, CEO and managing director of DXB Entertainments.
“Building our international visitation, which delivers higher yields, will play an important role in delivering our target of EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) breakeven during the second half of 2020. Our target is to achieve upwards of 60 percent international visitation.”
This will be achieved through the group’s hotel strategy, strategic partnerships and the expansion of its Motiongate Dubai and Bollywood Parks, Almulla added.