Herschend Family Entertainment Corporation (HFE) today confirmed the company has acquired the Newport Aquarium in Newport, Kentucky, across the river from downtown Cincinnati.
“For nearly half a century, HFE has successfully operated theme parks and attractions throughout the U.S. Given the broad appeal of animals, and our desire to create experiences that can be shared by the entire family, these aquariums are a nice fit for Herschend,” said Manby. “We will operate business as usual, with a focus on making the operating transition as smooth and transparent as possible for the Aquarium’s guests and employees.”
“HFE has a proven track record and we are confident they will continue to expand upon the success of the aquarium, which we are proud to say has enjoyed yearly attendance growth and consistent profitability since opening,” said Yaromir Steiner, CEO of Steiner + Associates, the former owner of the Newport Aquarium.
Dudley Taft, one of the founding partners of the Newport Aquarium, will continue as a minority investor.
Genesis Capital, LLC served as the financial adviser and Husch & Eppenberger, LLC served as legal advisor to Herschend Family Entertainment Corporation.
About Newport Aquarium
Newport Aquarium (www.newportaquarium.com) showcases thousands of animals from around the world in a million gallons of water. This state-of-the-art facility was named the No. 1 aquarium in the Midwest in the Zagat Survey’s U.S. Family Travel Guide in 2004 and the Best Rainy Day Outing in 2006 in Cincinnati Family Magazine. Situated on the Ohio River, the Newport Aquarium opened in May 1999 and today is part of Newport on the Levee, a complex offering a mixture of restaurants, shopping and entertainment.