SeaWorld CEO Resigns After Just Five Months
SeaWorld CEO Serge Rivera has officially resigned just five months after becoming CEO. According to a news release, Rivera’s resignation was due to disagreements over the board’s involvement in the decision making at the company, adding that he has stepped down from the board.
It was announced this morning that the company’s Chief Financial Officer, Marc Swanson, would be named the interim CEO. Swanson has been with the Company for nearly 20 years and has previously served as interim CEO.
Swanson is expected to remain in the role at least through the reopening of SeaWorld’s theme parks, which are currently closed in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Company officials said once the parks resume normal operations, the board will review the role.
The move comes about a week after SeaWorld announced that it would be furloughing more than 90% of its staff due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Rivera, the company’s at least fourth CEO in six years, is not entitled to and is not seeking any severance, SeaWorld said. The Executive Officers of the Company have agreed to reduce their base salary by 20% until the Company’s theme parks substantially resume normal operations.
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment headquarters is based in Orlando and operates 12 theme parks, including five water parks in the United States.
As of now, all of SeaWorld’s theme parks remain closed due to the virus. SeaWorld officials did not say how long they expect parks to stay closed or when workers would be able to return, but they did say that during the closure, animal care experts will continue to look after the health and well being of the animals inside.
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