Disney plans to expand parks investment to $60 billion over 10 years

Sep 19, 2023 in "The Walt Disney Company"

Posted: Tuesday September 19, 2023 9:32am ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

The Walt Disney Company is developing plans to accelerate and expand investment in its Parks, Experiences and Products segment to nearly double capital expenditures over the course of approximately 10 years to roughly $60 billion, including by investing in expanding and enhancing domestic and international parks and cruise line capacity.

Senior Disney executives, including Chief Executive Officer Bob Iger and Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Chairman Josh D’Amaro, are gathered today with Wall Street analysts and investors at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida for an investor summit focused on Disney's Parks business.

"We’re incredibly mindful of the financial underpinning of the company, the need to continue to grow in terms of bottom line, the need to invest wisely so that we're increasing the returns on invested capital, and the need to maintain a balance sheet, for a variety of reasons," said Bob Iger. "The company is able to absorb those costs and continue to grow the bottom line and look expansively at how we return value and capital to our shareholders."

"We have an ambitious growth story that is supported by a proven track record and a bold vision for the future of our Parks business," said D'Amaro.

Disney shares fell just over 2% in early trading following the announcement.

Speaking in April 2023 at the Walt Disney Company Annual shareholder meeting, Disney CEO Bob Iger said that Disney plans to spend $17 billion over the next ten years in Walt Disney World, bringing 13,000 new jobs to the area. It isn't clear how today's announcement impacts those numbers, or how much of this $60 billion is earmarked for Walt Disney World.

Disney's Parks business is a key driver of value creation for the company, and positive segment results in recent past quarters through FY23Q3 have come in part from strong performance at Disney’s international parks, particularly those in Asia. Shanghai Disney Resort and Hong Kong Disneyland, which have both shown meaningful growth coming out of the pandemic through Q3 FY23, have even further growth opportunities with the expansions set to open later this year.

Disney says that its business's growth strategy for the parks over the next ten years will be a focus on stories, scale, and fans.

Stories

Disney will explore even more characters and franchises, including some that haven’t been leveraged extensively to date, as it embarks on a new period of significant growth domestically and internationally in its parks and resorts.

"We have a wealth of untapped stories to bring to life across our business," said D'Amaro. "Frozen, one of the most successful and popular animated franchises of all time, could have a presence at the Disneyland Resort. Wakanda has yet to be brought to life. The world of Coco is just waiting to be explored. There's a lot of storytelling opportunity."

Scale

Disney Parks has over 1,000 acres of land for possible future development to expand theme park space across its existing sites – the equivalent of about seven new Disneyland Parks.

"We stand alone when it comes to scale," said D'Amaro. "And while our scale is impressive, we have no shortage of space or regions of the world in which to tell new stories."

Fans

Today, Disney has seven of the top ten most attended theme parks in the world, including Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom Park, which has been the #1 attended theme park on earth for decades. Disney Parks welcome approximately 100 million guests each year.

Disney says there is still enormous untapped potential for reaching more consumers. According to Disney’s internal research, there is an addressable market of more than 700 million people with high Disney affinity it has yet to reach with its Parks. In fact, for every one guest who visits a Disney Park, there are more than ten people with Disney affinity who do not visit the Parks

"Ultimately what is most important to us is the relationship that we have with every guest," said D'Amaro. "Guests can spend a day with us at our Parks, a week with us on a Cruise, or the rest of their lives with us through Disney Vacation Club membership."

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flynnibus6 days ago

Non-sense... if you think employees are just things that just show up regardless of the value of the shift and such patterns have no impact.. you deserve the crappy turnover you will have. Employees have a ROI for a job too... if you ignore that fact, you won't retain employees.

Communicora6 days ago

It's more fun than Smugglers' Run, so they'd better keep it!

JD806 days ago

Put it this way, I have a family of 5 and my WDW trips are massively expensive. I don't know your personal story, but if you're there solo or with a smaller amount of people, then your trips are much cheaper than mine. So you can take that as a trade off! :D

Magenta Panther6 days ago

If they can bring in the Mandalorian, then they can bring in Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia as well.

Magenta Panther6 days ago

What really burns me is that Shanghai gets a new Peter Pan ride, and Tokyo gets a new Peter Pan ride, but we Yanks here in the States are stuck with an old, creaky Peter Pan ride that was built in 1955. Again, it is to weep.

Vegas Disney Fan6 days ago

It’s a shame they don’t add more missions to Falcon, our last trip we did Star Tours and our entire vehicle cheered when the Mandalorian scene started, everyone was so excited, the primary benefit of a screen ride is the same ride can feel totally new.

BrianLo6 days ago

I on the other hand have been an Engineer 80% of the time for strangers and a gunner 15% of the time. I have just once driven, it's getting tiresome.

JD806 days ago

Falcon is one of my favorite rides because being able to sit in the cockpit and pull that lever that gets you into hyperspace is just a :chefkiss: moment for me and my kids that it's almost worth the price of admission in to the park. My family has done Falcon over and over because of that.

BrianLo6 days ago

It just doesn't hold up to re-rides as well as a result. But I agree that my most memorable rides are always with first timers who suck. I think it just needs more missions as its chosen one isn't the greatest profile. One of the other ways to fix it would have them go off script for 20-25% of the run time or so and transfer the flight controls to the other positions briefly. It just really is a dichotomous experience with the positions, unless you are laughing at a loved one drive for the first time. Transferring the flight controls briefly would also lead to even more hilarity.

Nubs706 days ago

For arguments sake, I could get a job that is 9 hours away from home. I could only get an hour from the office. I could get a full time wage and never show up.

JMcMahonEsq6 days ago

No one cares where you decide to live or how long it takes you to drive to work. You get paid for the hours your working

Captain Barbossa6 days ago

The Springs Amazon drone show and the Dora the Explorer Live on…..….I mean Encanto Sing-A-Long coming to Epcot are going to knock your socks off!

yensid676 days ago

4 hour shifts? That would not be worth driving thru Orlando traffic, just to work 4 hours! (I am a former Cast Member also) ALL businesses should start your daily hours when you leave your house to get to work! I am almost ashamed to say I am a former Cast Member with everything that Disney is doing. Thanks to Chapek for throwing Disney down the Rabbit Hole and to DeSantis for trying to be a Authoritarian leader! (that's all I'm saying, Mom)

JMcMahonEsq6 days ago

The absolute insanity of trying to compare construction in the 1930's to now just defies logic. That's setting aside the number of dead and injured during construction