Walt Disney Bets On Paris

by Jessica Montevago
Walt Disney Bets On Paris

Disneyland's Sleeping Beauty Castle in Paris. Photo: Heather Cowper


Walt Disney Co. is looking to own 100% of shares for Disneyland Paris and other Euro Disney attractions, whose performance has lagged behind its counterparts over the past two decades.

Disney acquired a stake from Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal's Kingdom Holding Co. for $2.13 a share Friday, and now holds 85.7%. It’s offering the same price for the remaining shares, with plans to ultimately take Euro Disney private.

Disney also pledged 1.5 billion euros to improve Disneyland Paris, on top of the 2014 rescue package of 1 billion euros.

"The (Euro Disney group's) financial condition has been significantly and negatively impacted by the November 2015 events in Paris and the challenging business conditions that continued through 2016 in France and throughout Europe," The Walt Disney Co. said in its restoration offer. "The comprehensive proposal announced by Disney affords maximum flexibility to shareholders, addresses the Group’s financial needs and reflects its ongoing support for the long-term success of Disneyland Paris."

Visitors to Euro Disney are down more than 9% in 2016, the company said, at 13.4 million.

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