SeaWorld Loses Its Bud

Anheuser-Busch InBev has decided to sell its theme parks, including three SeaWorlds and two Busch Gardens locations.

The Belgium-based company, which took over Anheuser-Busch for $52 billion, needs to shed assets. Private equity firm Blackstone Group has decided to buy the amusement parks for at least $2.3 billion in cash and give InBev the right to up to $400 million of Blackstone’s initial returns.

InBev’s Busch Entertainment Corp. is considered the second-largest entertainment park operator in the U.S. after Walt Disney Co. and has about 25 million visitors per year, according to a statement.

It consists of 10 amusement parks including SeaWorld properties in Florida, Texas and California; Busch Gardens in Florida and Virginia and other parks including Sesame Place and Adventure Island.

“We are delighted to be investing in a company with such iconic brands, irreplaceable assets and strong growth prospects,” said Blackstone senior managing director Michael Chae.

Blackstone’s other investments include Universal Studios Orlando and Madame Tussauds wax museums.