Disney Says Shanghai Disneyland to Reopen on May 11

Shanghai Disneyland will reopen on May 11 but attendance will be limited and guests will have to wear masks.
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Walt Disney  (DIS) - Get Report said it would reopen Shanghai Disneyland on May 11 but attendance will be limited and guests will have to wear masks and be subject to temperature checks.

Attendance at the park will be limited to less than 30% of the 88,000 guests per day it can hold normally, CEO Bob Chapek told investors Tuesday.

"We are going to open up far below that to have our training wheels on," Chapek said.

Entry to the park, which has been closed since late January due to the coronavirus outbreak, will require reservations.

“Today, as residents in Shanghai and its neighboring provinces have returned to more normal life - including at workplaces, schools, shops, restaurants, and entertainment destinations - I’m excited to share that Shanghai Disneyland will also be reopening to the public on May 11,” said a blog post from Joe Schott, president and general manager of Shanghai Disney Resort.

The rest of Disney’s theme parks across the world, including Disney World in Florida and Disneyland in California, remain shut. No estimates were given as to when the U.S. parks might reopen.

The media and entertainment giant's theme parks segment saw revenue fall 10% to $5.5 billion in the fiscal second quarter while operating income fell 58% to $639 million. 

The company said it estimates the coronavirus eliminated about $1 billion in operating income for the division in the quarter.

"We believe it is going to take serious time for park attendance to get back to normal because of structural challenges related to social distancing, limited travel, and a weaker consumer, which should be partially offset by what should be pent-up demand because the brand is still very strong," said Jim Cramer and the Action Alerts PLUS team, which holds Disney in its portfolio.

Shanghai Disneyland is Disney’s largest single international investment, according to Bloomberg. USA Today said Shanghai Disneyland was the eighth-most visited theme park in the world in 2018.

Disney shares fell 1.34% to $99.71 in premarket trading Wednesday.