The Walt Disney Company (DIS), Comcast Corporation (CMCSA): Amusement Parks Ready for Profitable Summer

Page 1 of 2

In 2009, things looked bleak for the nation’s amusement parks, with revenues sinking to $11.6 billion overall. But since then, as recovery for other industries has been sluggish, theme parks have experienced impressive growth. IBISWorld expects 2013 to be a record-breaking year for theme parks, raking in $13.4 billion. This would be a 2.8% increase from last year.

Disney exceeds expectations

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) posted higher-than-expected earnings for its second quarter, due in part to the $3 million the company put into improving its parks, cruise ships, and resorts. Perhaps bolstered by $1.51 billion in income for its latest quarter, The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) raised ticket prices for its California and Florida parks. Visitors now pay $92 in California and $95 in Florida for a single-day admission.

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS)

But if analysts were worried higher prices might scare guests away, reports of longer-than-ever lines likely assuaged those concerns. Added to that is the fact that The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) hiked its prices last year, as well, and the company ended 2012 with larger-than-ever profits.

For The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), however, its media networks appear to be the biggest earners for the company. The owner of ABC, Lifetime, ESPN and more enjoyed nearly $5 billion in revenue from its networks for the second quarter, attributed largely to recent growth at ESPN. While its theme parks are still important to The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS)’s shareholders, the performance of its media outlets appears to be more vital to the company’s earnings.

The wizarding world of Universal

Thanks to the magic of a certain young wizard, Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA)’s Islands of Adventure at Universal Studios saw a 66% leap in admissions from 2009 to 2011. This period was significant because The Wizarding World of Harry Potter debuted in 2010, with an expected expansion to the adjacent Universal Studios Florida park in 2014. Plans to add The Wizarding World of Harry Potter to its Hollywood theme park the next few years are currently underway.

Last year, theme parks were big earners for Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA), with the company achieving $2.1 billion in sales in 2012. Obviously, its parks are only one of many ventures for the country’s largest cable service provider. In addition to its parks and cable customers, Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) owns NBC and CNBC, along with significant holdings in several other cable outlets. Still, parks are an important new part of Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA)’s business, with the company reporting Universal theme parks as a “standout” in its earning report. Profits on NBCUniversal fell 2.4 percent, while theme park revenue rose 12.2 percent during the same period.

Not to be outdone by Disney, Universal Studios Florida actually boosted its ticket prices this year to $92, beating Disney by becoming the first park to lift ticket prices above $90. But will it harm sales? With Universal Orlando now offering new rides based on the films Transformers and Despicable Me, movie fans will likely show up to try them out. But loyal Harry Potter fans will no doubt pay the new price to try out the new Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride at Universal Orlando.

Six Flags Entertainment Corp (NYSE:SIX) over everywhere

While it’s no Disney, the Six Flags Entertainment Corp (NYSE:SIX) chain of amusement parks is no slouch in the amusement-park game itself. Known as the world’s largest chain of theme parks, the company operates 19 venues throughout North America, including Six Flags parks in 11 states, Canada, and Mexico.

Page 1 of 2
Comments
Insider Monkey Small Cap Strategy
Insider Monkey Small Cap Strategy

Insider Monkey beat the market by 52 percentage points in 24 months. Our beta is only 1.2 (don't click this link if beating the market isn't important to you).

Lists

Richest Doctors in the World

The Best Movie Sountracks Ever

The Highest Grossing Musicals on Broadway

The Most Successful Reality TV Stars

Cheapest Cities to Visit in the US

Most Expensive Summer Camps

Most Expensive Animals in the World

Most Expensive Specialty Crops in the World

Movies That Took Ages to Make

The Longest Hollywood Films Ever Made

Most Expensive Concert Stages

The Richest Bands of all Time

10 Most Corrupt Countries 2013 List

10 Countries with the Highest Quality of Life Index

Most Expensive Mattresses in the World

5 Smallest Countries by Land Area

The Ultimate Heartbreak Songs

Richest Teenagers in the World

10 Most Haunted Places in America

10 Best Places to Retire in Florida East Coast

Top 10 Places to See Before You Die

Top 8 Countries in the World Where Justice Prevails

10 Richest States in America

15 Wealthiest Countries in the World

Richest Singers in the World

Most Expensive Tasting Menu in New York City

Most Expensive Baby Items in the World

Most Expensive Hotel Suites in Vegas

Most Expensive Brunch in New York City

Most Expensive Beef Cuts in the World

25 Best Colleges to Get a Job

Top 10 US Supermarkets

The 25 Most Dangerous Cities in the World to Visit

Most Expensive Xbox Games

Top 11 Cities Where Billionaires Live

Top 10 Most Charitable Companies in America

Most Expensive Seafood in the World

The 10 Wildest Conspiracy Theories

The 10 Best Job Markets in the US

Top 10 Accounting Scandals of All Time

The 25 Biggest Cities in the World

Top 10 Best Paying Virtual Jobs

Most Expensive Leather Shoes in the World

Top 6 Things to Buy in March

The 10 Most Stressful Jobs in America – 2014 List

Top 10 Jobs for Introverted People

Top 10 Honeymoon Destinations in the World

Top 10 Highest Paying Jobs in the World

Most Expensive Day-Care in New York City

The 10 Cheapest Places to Retire Abroad

Subscribe

Enter your email:

Delivered by FeedBurner

X

Thanks! An email with instructions is sent to !

Your email already exists in our database. Click here to go to your subscriptions

Insider Monkey returned 47.6% in its first year! Wondering How?

Download a complete edition of our newsletter for free!