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View Full Version : Sally Corp lays off nearly half of their staff...



drfrightner
01-29-2009, 10:25 PM
Today it was announced that Sally Corp a dark ride company fired nearly half of their staff today... the economy is hitting home closer and closer to our industry. Dan Faupel as many of you know left Creative Visions to take a job with Sally and he was one of the people let go. I hope Dan is able to find a new job and wish him well.

Here i a link...

http://www.jacksonville.com/business/2009-01-27/story/slowdown_leads_to_sally_corp_laying_off_16

xxxdirk
01-29-2009, 11:02 PM
That really sucks!! I had the good fortune to be taken on a tour of the place last may by Dan and the level of stuff they have is amazing. Dan if you read this, I am so sorry for you and hope that with this closing of a door a better one will open for you!!!!

Ron

Mike Honcho
01-29-2009, 11:26 PM
yeah that dose suck i like Dan hope he gets a job quick

SomeThingInTheIce
01-30-2009, 12:32 PM
Ya, that was big news here in Florida. The parks are leting people go too and Cypress Gardens was going to close and then sell off thier rides and reopen just as gardens and put in condos. They closed and never reopened, no one knows whats going on with them. Things are tight everywhere.

Raycliff Manor
01-30-2009, 06:45 PM
Wow! I am very sorry to hear this, as I know Dan was thoroughly enjoyin Sally Corp. Dan is an awesome individual and I know someone will snatch him up fast! He'd be an assett to any company interested in tapping into his creativity and dedication!

Kel

Nicole
02-01-2009, 08:36 PM
That sucks - Dan is SO talented!

MidnightEvil
02-01-2009, 09:02 PM
I got an long email from Dan yesterday, he said

"I would still like to have full-time employment, and have some leads,
but I have decided to start my own business doing freelance design work
for themed attractions. If any of you or anyone you know is in need of
design/creative services please let me know. "

icandrawem2
02-01-2009, 09:41 PM
Things are getting really slow here in the amusement world for sure. I work for a themed environment/scenic shop here in Jacksonville as well and I know for us its been dead since the new year. Most of our shop was laid off after Christmas and any new work coming in is slow to do so. But I know Dan and with his talent and experience, some place will snag him up fast if they know whats good for em. It really is affecting everyone and even folks on the small scale are starting to feel it. For all of you out there looking for work, hang in there and hopefully it will get better soon!

robert
02-02-2009, 12:11 AM
Is Drew Hunter still working for Sally?

drfrightner
02-02-2009, 03:53 AM
I do not think they laid of Drew he's their main guy. To be honest I saw this coming for Sally anyway... amusement parks haven't been doing very many dark rides over the past few years and in my opinion Sally dark rides just aren't that different from each other. They all look the same, if you ask me they don't push the creative envelope. The reason I really saw this coming is because the parks that do want dark rides want higher end trying to rival Universal or Disney and have been going to other designers. Plus a lot of parks have been going with these 4D dark ride attractions again leaving a company like Sally out of the running.

There is only so many Six Flags out there, and they all have what they have and they don't seem to be changing them. Six Flags is adding a dark ride this year but did not hire Sally rather Gary Goddard.

There is a lot of people out there right now offering dark rides, and with so many amusement parks not building dark rides or freezing major spending this really leaves Sally out in the cold. Its just hard to maintain a major staff, lots of high paid staff with little to no work.

We'll see if they end up laying off even more people down the road.

Personally I think all amuesement parks should add MORE dark rides rather than MORE coasters... I hope they do because we'd like to build some for them. I really love building dark rides... lots of fun!

Sally has always got most of the low end dark ride jobs (meaning under 2 million) which are the same kind of dark rides we go after. If we could just do one a year I'd be thrilled... but these jobs just aren't out there right now.

We haven't been contacted for a dark ride in a while and when we do get contacted its usually overseas!

Larry

drfrightner
02-02-2009, 03:59 AM
FYI... nearly every company I've talked to that builds whole attractions has NO work! You might be seeing a ton of attraction design firms go out of business this coming year. Things are pretty bad right now.

Our company has no incoming jobs either, lucky for us we had 4 attraction under contract before everything went to hell in a hand basket. Things are just bad right now for attraction designers/builders because people who want attractions can't get loans.

Tough line or work to be in that is for sure! Sally just like ourselves and many other companies are just not getting offered the work like in the past. The companies that can survive in situations like this will be much better off when people start spending money again.

I'm sure Sally will make it and be just fine but might always operate with a much smaller staff going forward like many firms!

Larry

Jonathan
02-02-2009, 09:16 AM
It's tough times right now. SO many places with no work coming in and struggling to stay a float.

I feel for everyone who has been part of any form of layoff. My heart goes out to you.

I do agree, Sally will make it. But many of the smaller places will most likely go belly up. Here is to crossing our fingers.

drfrightner
02-02-2009, 01:59 PM
We have people who want to buy attractions, they just can't get a loan just yet. Remember there is a huge difference from someone selling $100,000 to 2 million dollar rides to most vendors in this industry who sell $500 zombies. Relate a Dark Ride or Coaster to people buying a new home or going on a trip to France. It will all turn out and companies will be better off after this is all over than before it started.

Haunts will be fine, local movie theatres will be fine, local amusement parks will have banner years!

Larry

stafford
02-02-2009, 02:11 PM
I posted some conflicting information on this same idea in another thread.

But, here's my take.

I think haunts will be down. Not as much as other industries, but still down. Here's my logic.

The largest portion of our demographic (12-24), will not feel the pinch as greatly as the older demographic. These kids aren't as worried about paying the mortgage or car payment, so their disposable income is probably still up for grabs. We're probably ok here.

However, in the lower end of this demo, say the kids that are still living out of Mom and Dad's pocket, well there just may not be the supply of cash they typically get from Mom and Dad.

Also, parents with children/teenagers. Let's face it, a lot of times you'll see the Dad (or Mom) with his kids and usually some of their friends waiting in line, they've made an outing of it for their kids and kids' friends. Some of these parents are going to be hit by hard times, and let's face it, with haunts becoming more expensive, are not going to be as willing to take the kids out to the haunted house.

So there's what I think will hurt us.

The optimist in me wants to agree with Larry, and part of me thinks he may be right, depending how bad things get.

The realist in me, believes what I stated above.

Let's hope the optimist kicks the realist's...

Chris