Theme Park Insider

Disney Keeps Making Money

August 4, 2015, 5:58 PM · The Walt Disney Company's domestic theme parks recorded record attendance over the past three months, according to the company's quarterly conference call with investors.

Attendance at the Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts was up four percent over the same period in 2014, and each guest spent about 2 percent more on average on food, drinks and merchandise in the parks during the period than the typical guest did at the same time last year.

Sleeping Beauty's Castle
The 60th anniversary Diamond Celebration is driving higher attendance at the Disneyland Resort, according to the company.

Disney did not break out attendance for Disney World versus Disneyland, but for parks outside the US, Disney noted that attendance was down at Hong King Disneyland and that Shanghai Disneyland continues to cost more and more as it approaches its opening.

Overall theme park revenue was up 4 percent to $4.1 billion, with operating income up 9 percent to $922 million. Overall, Disney reported $2.5 billion in profit for the quarter, an 11 percent increase over the same quarter in the previous year.

Replies (25)

August 4, 2015 at 6:30 PM · Could be a big part of why DHS sits in disarray as you reported yesterday, if the crowds keep coming in droves there's no rush to fix or build anything.
August 4, 2015 at 6:34 PM · If you don't build it, they will still come.
August 4, 2015 at 8:16 PM · $2.5B in profit? In a quarter? Amazing. I work for a "large" local company and we make like $2.5B in REVENUE in a YEAR. I can't even fathom $2.5B in PROFIT.

It is WAY PAST the time Disney should be reinvesting the profits not only in infrastructure around the resorts but in advancing the parks themselves. This earnings report DEMANDS that Disney announce something SIGNIFICANT at the D23 Expo.... Fans deserve something in return for their loyal patronage.

August 4, 2015 at 9:30 PM · Interesting to see how the opening of Shanghai DLand will effect the US resorts. That's a lot of Chinese people that will not need to visit Disneyland or World to get the latest and best attractions to come out of WDI.

But I'd imagine Hong kong Dland will feel by far the greatest effect. I still don't understand why disney is building a park that will compete with it's own park in Hong Kong.

August 4, 2015 at 10:18 PM · Both Disney resorts in China will be fine. China will have two parks in a country with 1.3 billion, or a billion more than the U.S.
August 4, 2015 at 11:39 PM · Well said Rob....
August 4, 2015 at 11:51 PM · Im not so sure. That's assuming that only the population of the US visits the US Disney parks, which clearly recieve huge numbers of foreign visitors, especially Disney world. Even so the 1.3 billion people in China have significantly less money than the 300 million in the US and even more less than the 500+ million or more in Europe where Disneyland Paris has struggled for decades. I don't think that using population alone is a guarantee of success for a Disney park. Those 1.3 billion people surely did not descend upon Hong Kong Disneyland when it was built.
August 5, 2015 at 2:06 AM · Have to agree with James, Disney has to announce something pretty special at the Expo, particularly with the current state of DHS.
August 5, 2015 at 2:48 AM · Magic Handcuffs were to drive more revenue from the guests and supply marketing data. So, $1 billion and a 2 percent increase in guest purchases?!
Heck, Disney's price increases in EVERYTHING is more than 2% per year.
Doesn't sound like a great use of $1 billion when we could have added rides without acting like hey are land locked and tearing out old ones whenever they do add a new ride every 5-8 years. Not E Tickets mind you but Mermaid and cute kiddie Dwarf Coaster and duplicate Toy Story Mania, Dumbo, Soarin', etc.
This is not your Father's creative theme park leader anymore.
If Universal keeps growing at high single or low double digits, they will pass AK, Epcot, and Studios. Without the breakdowns per park, I'll bet these 3 WDW parks are 2% - 0% increases in park attendance.
August 5, 2015 at 3:40 AM · Disney can keep holding back on new attractions, the people still come in droves trough their gates driven bij commercials and nostalgia.
I've been there and it was magical.
There was magical concrete in the rose garden, magical construction walls all over AK and Downtown Disney and magical closed rides at DHS.
The T7DMT had 2 magical breakdowns during my 2.5 hour wait and the ride was short and magical. I paid magical prices for eatable poop (that magic is gone now) and I had a magical experiences watching a movie commercial that spoiled the movie at a location where an attraction was and in another venue I saw clips of Frozen I already watched at home 10000 time but man it was magical.
The atmosphere was almost zen due to magic band+ and I never ever waited in line. After a long day a magical bus came (also without standing in line) and took me to my magical and very affordable hotelroom that was just a small walk of 30 minutes from the bus stop. I just can't wait to go back next year. Oh look I got an email, Frozen in Norway will be open. How does Disney know I love Frozen? It's magical.
August 5, 2015 at 7:03 AM · Stocks down a bunch - but it just ran from 85 to 120 in a few months so a pullback not unusual. Hopefully it will lever off at 110 and stay there..

James - this is a nice profit but have you ever heard of Apple.... hahhaha


Rob Pastor is correct. Do nothing and the drones still arrive like zombies.
Must go to Disney. must go to Disney.

They are good at maintaining parks..

August 5, 2015 at 7:29 AM · Stock just dropped $10 a share. I guess they are not expecting the same performance in the near future. May be a good stock buying opportunity, or the next crash. Who knows?
August 5, 2015 at 8:11 AM · Hong Kong attendance keeps dropping every quarter even though they did some spectacular attraction expansions. Disney Paris is still sick. And Shanghai costs keep over running. These international business ventures are looking like they weren't very good decisions. Japan is different since it's owned by OLC. Invest in the good old USA already.
August 5, 2015 at 8:12 AM · If Disney follows recent protocol, Igor will make big promises at D23 followed by huge disappointment when his lame new attractions open late in 2030.

When was the last time Disney opened an E-ticket in Orlando? Expedition Everest in 2006, and the Yeti broke down after 6 months. #cheapskate

August 5, 2015 at 8:34 AM · I have no less than 20 friends that are Disney fanatics, all of them on Facebook. Some of them have young children, so I can see the reasons for choosing Disney. We did the same thing and it was "fun", until I had something to compare those experiences to.

My brother in law, who knows nothing about Orlando (or any) theme parks, just mentioned "they want to take their young daughter to Disney because he is dying to see Harry Potter". I just slowly closed my eyes and imperceptibly shook my head before I had to politely correct him.

August 6, 2015 at 8:55 AM · Stock's dropping second day in a row and taking the other media stocks down with them. Disney was at $120 per share on Tuesday. Now it's $104 per share.
August 6, 2015 at 9:24 AM · O T, you absolutely made my day!!!! ROFL! :D
August 6, 2015 at 9:33 AM · Correction: Disney's last E-ticket in Orlando was built last year. It's called Seven Dwarves Mine Train and it's pretty freakin' amazing.

Frozen will open next year, Avatar will open the following year, and DHS will be packed with new attractions most likely sometime between 2017 and 2021. And all of those new attractions (except for maybe Frozen) will put The Wizarding World Of Cash-Cow Potter to shame.

August 6, 2015 at 1:10 PM · It's a rare reviewer that's
referred to 7 dwarfs as an E ticket. Most generally considered a D ticket. It's extremely short ride time, missing the original cost engineered indoor scenes, works against an E ticket classification. 7 Dwarfs is nowhere near the awesomeness of the other mountains at MK.Just check out the ratings and reviews on TPI alone while you're on the site.
August 6, 2015 at 1:45 PM · 70.126.135.117... you have never set foot inside of Diagon Alley, have you? Hogsmeade is great, but Diagon Alley is on a whole other level.

Disney will always be about gentle family friendly rides, and no themed land can make me think a river ride, spinner or Soarin' clone is better than just walking through Diagon Alley. Gringotts and the Express are merely a bonus.

August 6, 2015 at 6:08 PM · Argh, I either accidentally submitted my comment unfinished or accidentally opened another tab! Lemme start over just in case.
NB,
I've actually been to Diagon Alley a few times and I'll admit it's pretty impressive. However, it's the only land at Universal (aside from Hogsmeade) that matches Disney's level of theming.

Now, before I go on, let me just say that I am not a Universal hater. I love Universal, but I think that Disney is better and that Universal gets a little more credit than it deserves.

Now then, the reason why I love Disney more is because it has something for everyone. Unless you're a thrill-seeker, teenager or Potterhead, there's nothing for you at Universal.Disney has spectacular thrill rides, such as Expedition Everest, (broken Yetti or not, it's still an awesome ride) Tower of Terror, (why can't more drop towers be like that?) Rock n Rollercoaster, (I don't fathom how people say that Disney is "all family rides" while they have this in their lineup) and Splash Mountain (IMHO the best ride ever). They also, of course, have spectacular family rides such as Kilimanjaro Safaris, (always makes the animal lover inside me shriek with joy) Midway Mania (always lots of fun) Soarin (which is criminally underappreciated on this website) (and Haunted Mansion (perfect across all boards).

Moreover, I hear a lot of complaints concerning WDW but I never hear many complaints about UO, which has lead me to believe that hating on Disney really is becoming more of a bandwagon than anything else. I am Mickey's faithful defender through and through, but even I admit they have their fair share of problems. And guess what? So does Universal!

I would love to see a rebuilt Yetti, but even more so I would love to see an updated Hulk pre-show, who's horrendous animation undermines an otherwise awesome thrill monster.

Stitch's Great Escape is nowhere near as good as Alien Encounter, but at least it's good (even though some would say otherwise) unlike the Wild West Stunt Show's replacement, Fear Factor.

Yes, FP+ has it's problems, but at least it let's you can use it for all of the rides, unlike Universal Express.

I understand why people were disappointed with New Fantasyland. But I don't understand why people haven't complained about Springfield, who only only has one new ride, A CARNIVAL SPINNER! Seriously, Universal builds spinners, no one bats an eye. Disney builds spinners and everyone loses their minds. How is that fair?

And you think that Disney tries to rip your money away from you? Well there's a reason why I called Harry Potter Cash-Grab Potter in my last comment under my other IP address. All the butterbeer, the pumpkin juice, the countless merchandise, the fact that before the wands let you cast spells they still made you pay a fortune for what was a cheap piece of plastic. But the most blatant example is how you have to pay to visit both parks to experience all of Harry Potter. They did that for one reason and one reason only: to make more money.

And, NB, if my obsession with Disney truly bothers you, then I'm sorry. Sorry for the fact that you can't stand other people with differing opinions. Sorry that you never have anything better to say other than how much Disney sucks. I'm sorry you always have to make fun of Disney fans for blindly putting their faith in Disney even though you're no better in regards to Universal. I'm sorry. I truly am.

August 7, 2015 at 5:12 PM · If 7 Dwarves Mine Train is an e ticket then what isnt?
August 7, 2015 at 2:56 PM · Anonymous poster...It looks like your wish will be granted. Along with two major refurbs of the Hulk during the next year, Universal will be redoing the queue and pre show.
August 8, 2015 at 5:02 AM · Regarding HKDL, they made three mistakes with that park.
1. They opened it a la DAK, as in well-themed but with not enough to do. That worked in Florida because it's a package ticket deal there, but you can't open a "second day" park without the first one.
2. They didnt gear the park towards local tastes, nor did they take into account the passport-needed, basically foreign country to China status complicating mainland travel to Hong Kong.
3. They misread the tea leaves regarding the entrepĂ´t market (as did Universal in Singapore.) This is an entirely different, more cosmopolitan, more traveled demographic than visits the American theme parks (or, for that matter, the insanely xenophobic and animation loving Japanese.) Which isn't to say that they won't go to a theme park. It's just that the theme park they're going to has to be off the charts great.
Ironically, HKDL has exactly the scenario we'd love for American Disney parks to have: attendance dependent upon ride investment.

August 8, 2015 at 5:07 AM · As for Disneyland Paris, they never overcame the structural issues of that resort (too many required hotel rooms that close to effin Paris,) and Europe is basically in crisis mode at present.

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