Movers and Shakers
Fred Foster, co-founder and CEO of Electronic Theatre Controls Inc. (ETC), passed away on Feb. 8, 2019, at the age of 61. Considered an innovator, visionary, and role model, ETC credits Foster for creating a people-focused culture of family, support, and encouragement. He is credited with numerous industry contributions, ranging from product innovations to mentoring programs for students. Over the years, Foster was consistently recognized for his philanthropy. In the summer of 2015, Foster announced he had been diagnosed with cancer and underwent extensive treatments. His wife Susan Foster, son James Foster, and daughter Kate Foster are all employed by ETC.
Anthony “Tony” Pero
Anthony “Tony” Pero, who was a fixture at Ocean Beach Park in New London, Connecticut, for more than four decades, died Jan. 28, 2019, at the age of 97. After serving in World War II as a shipfitter for the U.S. Navy, Pero started at the park in 1946, earning 60 cents per hour as captain of the lifeguards. He was then promoted to activities director, where he recruited musicians like Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, and Loretta Lynn to play at the park. Pero eventually became the park’s general manager, the position he held when he retired in 1988.
SeaWorld Entertainment Hires CEO
SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. has named Gustavo “Gus” Antorcha as the company’s new CEO following a search to replace former CEO Joel Manby, who departed the company in early 2018. Antorcha most recently was chief operating officer at Carnival Cruise Line and had been with the company for more than eight years. Prior to Carnival, he was a partner and managing director at Boston Consulting Group. SeaWorld says Antorcha’s accomplishments in delivering stronger financial results and improved guest satisfaction by leading efforts to optimize pricing, improve onboard marketing and communications, and introduce new guest experiences made him a good fit for SeaWorld’s current corporate strategy.
Six Flags Brands
Three New Parks
Three Six Flags Entertainment Corp. parks open the season with a new name. The rebranding of the properties acquired from EPR Properties last year brings the parks into the Six Flags portfolio. Darien Lake near Buffalo, New York, has become Six Flags Darien Lake; Wet & Wild Splashtown in Houston, Texas, is now Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Splashtown; and Wet & Wild Phoenix in Arizona will now be known as Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Phoenix. The parks have all undergone renovations for the 2019 season. Six Flags Entertainment Corp. operates 26 parks across the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
Switch Names New GCC Distributor
Switch International, manufacturer of modern bowling equipment, announced the appointment of Warehouse of Games as its new distributor for the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) territory. Headquartered in Dubai, Warehouse of Games is a supplier of amusement equipment and arcade games in the Middle East. Switch International CEO Alain Winterhalter says the collaboration of the two companies will reinforce Switch’s presence in the GCC region and bring about unique and sensational entertainment and bowling projects.
EagleVision Entertainment Studios, headquartered in Orlando with an international office in Shanghai, has hired veteran industry leader Bradley Caruk as its executive vice president. He will leverage his experience to develop the entertainment studio and work to propel it onto the world stage. The company says it is looking to him to help EagleVision expand its business and showcase the talents of its creative team. Caruk has worked for Walt Disney Imagineering, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment, Warner Bros. Entertainment, and Paramount Studios.
WhiteWater has announced the hiring of Philip Edgell as president of Vantage. The system, launched at IAAPA Attractions Expo 2018, captures all of a venue’s visitor and operations data. The real-time insight is then offered to operators so they may respond immediately to conditions, analyze trends, and help guests to personalize their experiences. Edgell most recently led the sales operations of Vancouver tech company Hootsuite as its global vice president. Prior to Hootsuite, he was executive vice president of operations at Long View Systems, an information technology company, where he was responsible for business performance in both North America and Europe.
A. Cüneyt Sayın
A. Cüneyt Sayın joins Futuraform Composites and Advertising Products Inc. as general manager. Prior to joining Futuraform (a division of Polin Waterparks specializing in the design and manufacturing of building products), Sayın worked for a decade in the parks and landscaping sectors of the industry. He also worked in the production, research and development, and export departments at Beldeyama for 11 years.