When you think of a competitor to the Disney Parks, it is often tough to find another company that has dominated the global theme Park market with the same amount of success.
Of course, Universal has done incredibly well and is likely the biggest source of competition for Disney, especially since they have multiple theme park resorts which are in the same state. But, when it comes to Europe, Disneyland Paris does not have the same competition. Now, it seems that Vivendi CEO Arnaud de Puyfontaine is looking to step into the theme park and entertainment business and create a European Disney. Vivendi owns Gameloft, Groupe Canal+, Havas, Editis, Vivendi Village and Dailymotion.
The Hollywood Reporter noted what Arnaud had to say about Disney, and what he hopes to do with his own company and ideas based on their success:
“I admire Disney, what I wish Vivendi to become: to create a kind of European Disney-type of company.”
The French conglomerate admitted that he has a print on his desk of drawing by Walt Disney from the 1950s, which has Mickey Mouse wondering where the company will go, which is where Arnaud seems to be right now. The idea of a new “Disney” in the European space is an interesting one, as well as one that does not yet seem fully developed. Arnaud was not able to provide details on this new idea but would like to create a company that could cross-promote their offerings through various platforms, which is something we see Disney do through movies, theme parks, merchandise, and more — everything is connected.
Now, will this work? It may, but of course, just targeting the European market will make it smaller than Disney, which dominates globally and already has a hand in every market worldwide. That being said, something catered more towards the culture of Europeans could do very well in the area as it will have the chance to appeal to the niche market and cater themselves towards it. Plus, Disneyland Paris did not open to a warm welcome from Europeans, so perhaps the way to dominate the continent is to have something created by the people who live in it, and not an American company.
It will be interesting to see if another immersive theme park is ever built that can compete with Disney and what differences it would have. Will there be a main character like Mickey Mouse? How will the story begin? These are all questions that will likely be answered with time if the idea continues to progress.
What do you think of a “European Disney”? Let us know in the comments below.