Disney pouring US$60b into theme parks, cruises over the next decade
The Walt Disney Company is planning to invest approximately US$60 billion into its theme parks and cruise lines over the next decade, as the company looks to continue growing one of its more successful business segments.
The company said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday that the planned investment is nearly double what it spent in the prior 10-year period.
The Disney Parks, Experiences and Products segment continues to do well for the company, with revenue rising 13 per cent in its fiscal third quarter. That’s helped to offset the struggles in its Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution unit, which saw revenue dip one per cent in the period.
Disney is confident in its plans, saying in a prepared statement that it’s seen growth following previous periods of significant investment, which included the additions of Cars Land at Disney California Adventure, Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland and Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World, Avengers Campus at California Adventure and Walt Disney Studios Park in Paris.
It’s also opening new Frozen-themed lands at its Hong Kong, Paris and Tokyo properties, along with a Zootopia-themed land in Shanghai. And during a presentation at its Destination D23 event earlier this month, Disney made several parks announcements, including plans to create a new Pirates of the Caribbean-themed lounge in Magic Kingdom and the reimagining of the Test Track ride at Epcot.
Disney’s theme parks have been a top priority for Bob Iger since he returned in November to take over the CEO post from Bob Chapek.
The Burbank, California-based company’s theme parks are widely viewed by industry experts as a critical component of its business. To that end, Iger has been prioritising reconnecting with the Disney theme park die-hards and restoring their faith in the brand. Shortly after his return, changes rolled out at its parks in the United States.
While the company didn’t provide details on any specific plans it has for the US$60 billion investment, it did say that “there is a deep well of stories” that haven’t been fully explored at its theme parks yet.
Disney said that it has significant room to expand its theme parks further, with more than 1,000 acres of land for possible future development to expand theme park space across its existing sites. That’s equal to about seven new Disneyland parks.
Some of the company’s cruise line plans are already in place, as it previously announced that it will be adding two ships in fiscal 2025 and another in 2026.