A locked gate can be seen following the closure of Disneyland Theme Park in Hong Kong following the coronavirus outbreak in Hong Kong, China on Jan. 26, 2020.
Tyrone Siu | REUTERS
Disney's Hong Kong-based theme park can finally reopen this Friday, two months after it had to close for the second time due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Hong Kong eased a number of Covid-19 restrictions last week after testing nearly 2 million people in the area and only found 42 cases of the virus.
Walt Disney only has a minority stake in the park, while Hong Kong holds the majority stake. Guests are required to wear face masks and all indoor live performances will be canceled. In addition, the park is initially closed on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
The reopening of Hong Kong Disneyland, while a positive development for Disney, underscores how difficult it has been for the company to reopen other parks, especially in the US.
Florida allowed Disney World to reopen its theme parks in July, but the company's two parks in California have been closed for more than six months. There were plans to open the Anaheim locations in July, but a surge in Covid-19 cases led California to withdraw guidelines.
The shutdown was a severe financial blow to Disney, which gets most of its park revenues from locations in the United States. Disney's stock, valued at $ 229 billion, is down 12% year-to-date. The shares gained around 1% on Tuesday.
Disney's theme parks are part of a broader segment called parks, experiences, and consumer products, which also includes hotels, cruise lines, and merchandise. Last year, this segment represented 37% of the company's total revenue of $ 69.6 billion.
Park manager Josh D & # 39; Amaro was quick to notice that more than 80,000 people were relying on the company to work in the area during a Disney Parks update with media on Tuesday.
"For our California government officials, especially at the state level, I encourage you to treat theme parks like any other sector," he said. "Help us reopen. We need policies that are fair and equitable to better understand our future and to point a path to reopening. The longer we wait, the more devastating the impact on the communities in Orange County and Anaheim will be . "
The media update was a way for Disney to highlight its success in its parks in Florida and internationally in Paris, Shanghai and Japan, and to showcase the updated security measures Disney has already put in place. These guidelines include the requirement of masks, the availability of hygiene stations, mobile online ordering of meals and cashless payments.
"We are ready and most importantly, it is time," said D & # 39; Amaro.