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SeaWorld cuts about 350 jobs as it aims to boost attendance

  • SeaWorld has nearly 14,000 employees, according to FactSet. The cuts disclosed Wednesday represent about 2 percent of the company's full workforce.
  • The affected positions are focused on administrative functions and positions that don't encounter guests at parks.
  • The layoffs are the latest change at the company that has faced public backlash since "Blackfish," a documentary that criticized SeaWorld's handling of orcas, premiered in 2013.
Seaworld
Sandy Huffaker | Corbis | Getty Images
Seaworld

SeaWorld is cutting about 350 jobs, as the aquatic entertainment company continues to struggle drawing in crowds.

SeaWorld has nearly 14,000 employees, according to FactSet. The cut positions represent about 2 percent of the company's full workforce.

"We do not take this task lightly," the company said in a statement. "It is an unfortunate, but necessary, consequence of the restructuring that some positions will be lost."

The cuts include existing positions and open ones that will not be filled, SeaWorld said. The affected positions are focused on administrative functions and positions that don't involve interaction with guests. SeaWorld said it will offer severance benefits and outplacement assistance to employees whose jobs have been eliminated.

The company said it will use the savings toward growth initiatives such as marketing to help increase park attendance.

The layoffs are the latest change at the company that has faced public backlash "Blackfish," a documentary that criticized SeaWorld's handling of orcas, premiered in 2013. SeaWorld has repeatedly defended its practices but nonetheless made changes.

Earlier this year, SeaWorld San Diego said it would end its killer whale show and that its current orcas will be its last ones.

SeaWorld's stock was flat after hours. It closed down nearly 1.4 percent Wednesday at $12.31.

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