Comcast Corporation recently announced that they are signing a deal to take the full ownership of Universal Studios Japan. Reports indicate that the deal between the two companies was signed for an estimated $2.3 billion.
This recent deal is actually a part of the telecom company’s commitment to its theme park business. This business has created a solid growth for the company since they acquired NBCUniversal. Reports also indicate that Comcast is planning to buy out partners in the Osaka-based theme park and it includes former CEO of Universal Studios Japan Glenn Gumpel, Goldman Sachs, and private equity firms MBK Partners and Owl Creek Asset Management. It is believed that the deal will be closed by the end of April.
The Universal Studios parks in both Orlando and Hollywood have made considerable contribution to Comcast Corporation’s bottle line. In addition to that, the telecom company has also made big investments in new attractions and infrastructure developments of the theme parks like the Harry Potter-themed installations.
The “Wizarding World of Harry Potter” attraction was opened by the Universal Studios Japan back in the year 2014. Report indicates that they are planning to unveil a “Minion Park”, tied to the “Despicable Me” franchise, by the end of 2018.
The chairman-CEO of Universal Parks & Resorts, Tom Williams said, “Universal Studios Japan is an amazing and incredibly successful theme park. This acquisition will bring an even stronger future for the theme park, its guests and its team members. We are thrilled USJ will fully be part of the Universal family and look forward to continuing to create a remarkable experience for our guests.”
Reports also claim that Comcast had decided to sell the Universal theme parks right after the company acquired NBCU. However, Comcast decided to change course once they become a little bit more familiar with the Universal theme parks business.
Comcast’s acquisition of DreamWorks Animation last year allowed the telecom provider to use the properties and characters of DreamWorks Animation as fodder for the theme parks. Comcast Corporation is currently building a new theme park in Beijing and the company has already licensed a Universal Studios project in Singapore.