Disney theme parks in California expected to reopen next month, says CEO


Shoppers walk inside Disney California Adventure as its retail stores and restaurants partially reopened without rides during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Anaheim, California, US, Nov 19, 2020. [Photo/Agencies]

LOS ANGELES - Disney Chief Executive Officer Bob Chapek said on Tuesday that he expects the company's theme parks in the US state of California to reopen by late April.

During the 2021 annual meeting of shareholders, Chapek noted Disney was "encouraged by the positive trends we're seeing" in California.

"We are hopeful they'll continue to improve and we'll be able to reopen our parks by late April -- we look forward to publicizing an opening date in the coming weeks," the chief executive officer of the US entertainment giant said in a statement.

Theme parks, including Disneyland -- one of the most visited tourist attractions in Southern California, have been closed since March last year amid coronavirus fears.

California authorities announced last week that theme parks and stadiums in the state will be allowed to reopen as early as April 1 with capacity restrictions and other safety modifications.

According to the updates of the state's Blueprint to a Safer Economy unveiled by the California Department of Public Health, theme parks in the counties in the purple tier, the most restrictive tier of California's four-tier, color-coded system for reopening, are not allowed to reopen. But theme parks in the red tier will be eligible to reopen at 15 percent capacity. Maximum capacity will be increased to 25 percent for theme parks in the counties in the orange tier and to 35 percent in the yellow tier.

Almost all Southern California counties are still in the purple tier, but some of them, including Orange County where Disneyland is located, are on track to move into the red tier in the coming weeks as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to drop in the region.

Chapek applauded the new guidelines in the statement.

"While last week's announcement states that theme parks may open starting on April 1, the fact is it will take some time to get them ready for our guests - this includes recalling more than 10,000 furloughed cast and retraining them to be able to operate according to the State of California's new requirements," Chapek added.

Disney has been adversely impacted by the pandemic. The company said that since late in the second quarter of fiscal 2020 and continuing into fiscal 2021, COVID-19 and measures to prevent its spread have impacted their segments in a number of ways, most significantly at Disney Parks, Experiences and Products. Just in the most recent quarter ended Jan 2, according to Disney reports, the pandemic had cost its parks, experiences and products segment an estimated $2.6 billion in operating income, while segment revenues decreased by 53 percent to $3.6 billion.

2020年11月19日,美国加利福尼亚州阿纳海姆,在冠状病毒疾病(新冠肺炎)爆发期间,迪斯尼加州冒险乐园的零售店和餐馆部分重新开放,没有乘坐设施,购物者在里面行走。[图片/机构]洛杉矶——迪士尼首席执行官鲍勃·查皮克周二表示,他预计该公司在美国加利福尼亚州的主题公园将于4月下旬重新开放。在2021年股东年会上,查皮克指出,迪士尼对加州“我们看到的积极趋势感到鼓舞”。这家美国娱乐巨头的首席执行官在一份声明中表示:“我们希望它们会继续改善,我们将能够在4月下旬重新开放我们的公园——我们期待在未来几周公布开放日期。”由于担心冠状病毒,包括迪斯尼乐园在内的主题公园自去年3月以来一直关闭。迪斯尼乐园是南加州最受欢迎的旅游景点之一。加州当局上周宣布,该州的主题公园和体育场将被允许最早于4月1日重新开放,并进行容量限制和其他安全修改。根据加州公共卫生部公布的该州《更安全经济蓝图》的更新,紫色层县的主题公园不允许重新开放。紫色层是加州四层色标系统中限制最严格的一层。但是红层的主题公园将有资格以15%的容量重新开放。橙线县主题公园的最大容量将增加到25%,黄线县主题公园的最大容量将增加到35%。几乎所有南加州县仍处于紫线,但其中一些县,包括迪斯尼乐园所在的奥兰治县,有望在未来几周进入红线,因为该地区的新冠肺炎病例和住院人数继续下降。查皮克对声明中的新指导方针表示赞赏。“虽然上周的公告称主题公园可能从4月1日开始开放,但事实是,为我们的客人准备好它们需要一些时间——这包括召回10,000多名休假演员,并对他们进行再培训,使他们能够按照加利福尼亚州的新要求运营,”查皮克补充说。迪士尼受到了这场流行病的负面影响。该公司表示,自2020财年第二季度末持续到2021财年以来,新冠肺炎和防止其蔓延的措施在许多方面影响了他们的细分市场,最显著的是迪士尼乐园、体验和产品。根据迪士尼的报告,就在截至1月2日的最近一个季度,这场流行病使其公园、体验和产品部门的运营收入估计为26亿美元,而部门收入下降了53%,至36亿美元。

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