UNITED NEWS INTERNATIONAL (UNI) — The CEO of SeaWorld stepped down as the amusement park struggles to stay afloat.
The company announced Feb. 27, Joel Manby has been replaced by insider executive, John Reilly, as interim CEO.
Manby was hired in 2015, two years after the release of the documentary “Blackfish.”
The film focused on the amusement park’s treatment of its orcas and sparked backlash against its holding of the large marine mammals in captivity.
After being named CEO, Manby ended SeaWorld’s orca breeding programs and theatrical shows.
Still, the company says it lost about $200 million in the 2017 fiscal year and saw fewer guests.
But there may yet be hope for SeaWorld, as it pivots toward more educational exhibits and new rides in a bid to attract tourists.
USA Today reports the rate of attendance decline is slowing. SeaWorld said its number of visitors increased at the start of 2018.