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Could Walt Disney Co. become sole owner of Disneyland Paris?

When Euro Disney opened 25 years ago it was a partnership between The Walt Disney Company and a locally created company designed to meet ownership rules for companies in France. A lot has changed since then including the name to Disneyland Paris Resort. Facing a big debt load from over construction of hotels in its early years, the resort has struggled to show a profit over the years leaving the Walt Disney Company to steadily increase its ownership stake as it invested more and more into improving the park.

Now Disney wants buyout all the outstanding shares of Euro Disney SCA (the company that operates Disneyland Paris Resort) and have the stock delisted. Disney will first buyout the one remaining large investor (Kingdom Holding Co – which is the Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal’s company) then make a tender offer for all outstanding shares and delist the stock. This will leave The Walt Disney Company as the sole owner, operator.

After considerable investment from Disney, things had been on track until the 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris. Since then attendance levels have been down. The Mouse House is hoping that the 25th Anniversary celebration and assorted promotions will help bring crowds back to the park.

It’s a beautiful park and the resort itself has a lot of potential. The latest refurbishments include not just in the parks but at the resorts too. Disney acknowledges there is still work to be done, but taking on full ownership will go a long way.

(via Variety)

4 thoughts on “Could Walt Disney Co. become sole owner of Disneyland Paris?”

  1. Happy days, people, truly happy days! This is the news us Disneyland Paris fans have been waiting for. The Walt Disney Company bringing Disneyland Paris in-house will enable the French park’s financials to be protected by the deep pockets of the mothership. Meanwhile, CapEx will be similarly amortised against the much bigger Disney Parks & Resorts group, allowing Disneyland Paris to make more of the big investments it needs to protect its market position. We could be looking at a clone of Star Wars Land sailing into Walt Disney Studios Park to turn around its fortunes this side of 2025, within 6 years of the American equivalents. If rumours are true, a guideline opening date of 2022 (once thought fanciful) could be back in play – just 3 years after America. For comparison, l’Aventure Continue, Paris’s iteration of Star Tours The Adventures Continue, itself took around 6 years to make its way over (opens next month), and that’s a far smaller project. Meanwhile, Parc Disneyland remains a visual delight (especially with the Experience Enhancement Program improvements to the show standards), but hasn’t had any completely new attractions in far longer than is polite to mention. This will make it a certainty that the drought WILL finally end (My dream is for them to do it with a resurrection of the early concepts for La Croisière dans la Jungle, but that’s very unlikely). And to cap it all, direct ownership makes a return to the dork age of low show standards last seen around 2013/14 vanishingly unlikely. For Disneyland Paris’s 25th Birthday, The Walt Disney Company has given it and its fans the best possible present: a promise that, for Disneyland Paris, the best is yet to come.

  2. After hearing how Toy Story Land has been scaled back a bit based on expenditures for overseas parks, I worry about what buying out DLP will mean to the Epcot renovation plans.

  3. Having heard stories about how difficult it has been for Disney to get all investors to agree on expenditures related to maintenance and upkeep, this sounds like a great thing. DLP is my favorite of all the Magic Kingdom parks I’ve visited (haven’t seen Hong Kong or Shanghai yet), and having it fully owned and operated up to Disney standards would be fantastic.

  4. Pingback: Disneyland Paris 25th Anniversary Parade - behind the scenes video | The Disney Blog

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