Shakeup in Hong Kong

"Nothing to see here. Everything’s O.K." seems to be the refrain from management at Disney’s newest themepark, Hong Kong Disneyland. But a continue stream of bad press would indicate otherwise. Now there’s been a shake-up at the top level of the park with park director Don Robinson out (and into the gaming industry) and long time Disney operations guru Bill Ernest in.

Like the current president of Disneyland, Matt Ouimet, Ernest shares a history of success in the Disney Cruise Lines. I imagine they’re hoping to duplicate the turn-around that the original park has been seeing since Ouimet took over.

If the new park really is failing to bring in the numbers, they will have to walk the fine line between adding new attractions and entertainment and the budget deficits that accumulate when you do so. Similar budget deficits have hindered the profitability of Disneyland Paris. The park itself runs squarely in the black, but that turns out to be just enough to pay the interest on the loans they racked up building (over building the hotels mostly) the place. Glad I’m not making these decisions. I bet Don Robinson is too.

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