Ryman Hospitality sets dividend terms

$310M payout smaller than expected, to be made just before Christmas

Executives at Ryman Hospitality Properties said late Friday they will pay shareholders a $310 million special dividend in late December, one of the last steps it will take before the former Gaylord Entertainment Co. will convert to a real estate investment trust.

The $6.84-per-share payout is smaller than what Chairman and CEO Colin Reed told investors in May they could expect as a result of the sale of Gaylord's hotel management rights and brand. Back then, Reid said his team expected the dividend — which will clear accumulated profits off Ryman Hospitality's books — would be between $415 million and $450 million. That number includes $99 million for holders of Gaylord's convertible debt, but Ryman execs said in an August filing that they expected holders of common stock to get $333.5 million. NashvillePost.com emailed a company spokesman over the weekend about the adjustment and will update this story with an explanation if it is provided.

Shareholders of record on Nov. 13 can expect to receive their dividend on Dec. 21. Ryman Hospitality will pay up to 20 percent of the dividend in cash, the rest in shares.

The company also said that, as of Friday, Reed took on the title of president. Doing so filled the role of Dave Kloeppel, who had overseen the operations of Gaylord's hotel portfolio.

Shares of Ryman Hospitality (Ticker: RHP) closed Friday trading down 1.4 percent at $37.86. They're down about 5 percent in the past month.