Universal upbeat despite losses

Posted Wednesday, June 16, 2004 10:37 AM | Contributed by Jeff

GE's Universal parks still struggle to turn a profit, a concern that caused some drama in the acquisition of the business by GE. Despite the losses, executives publicly appear upbeat regarding the parks' future.

Read more from The LA Times via The Ledger.

Wednesday, June 16, 2004 10:39 AM
Jeff's avatar Note the last line about poor marketing. What else could possibly be the reason for IOA's lackluster attendance? Universal spent several years out-Disneying Disney and no one heard about it. Talk about a missed opportunity.

I hope they stick it out and see the potential for cross-marketing the parks, the studio and NBC.

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Wednesday, June 16, 2004 10:54 AM
I agree Jeff, in the early years the missed the boat, but currently, I have to admit, although I am actually sick and tired of the current promotion, with Cheap Trick's "Surrender" as the theme in the commercials, it has made me want to go back again after several years of not going. Maybe that and The Mummy is enough to get me there, but really, they haven't added much in the last few years to earn many repeat visits, thus in my opinion, is also keeping people away, resulting in lower earnings......
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Wednesday, June 16, 2004 10:25 PM
I agree that they did not market this park successfully at all. They went with the whole "Universal Escape" campaign which nobody got. And it didn't help that most guests didn't even know there was a 2nd park.

They would stand on New York street near Twister, look in the distance and see the Hulk, and then say "let's ride that!" not realizing it was not in the same park.

As someone who was at IOA opening day, I could not believe how light the crowds were. And this was after a week of HUGE publicity events, the Rosie O'Donnel show live from IOA, fireworks nightly, etc.

Then they changed the name to Universal Studios Escape, Universal Florida, Universal Orlando....make up your mind already! And to this day, the Studios still out perform IOA year after year.

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Wednesday, June 16, 2004 11:10 PM
Jeff's avatar That's what I don't get. IOA I think delivers more of a variety, really for everyone but the really old folks. I went to the studios for the first time in November since the month it opened in 1990, and I was shocked at how busy it was.
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Thursday, June 17, 2004 2:02 AM
I just don't see how the parks are still losing money. In the past year, I've noticed the parks seem to be getting increasingly more crowded. Does this really just go back to the poor performance in 1999?

It is true that most people don't even realize that there are two parks. When I talk to people around here, they say "Oh we went there 5 or 6 years ago, it's all right." The commericals are frequent, but they should have seperate commericals for IOA and USF I think. People just don't understand that this is a true resort, they really look at it as a one park, one day type of thing. Maybe people just have to learn through word of mouth and over the course of time their attendance will improve.

With no new improvements in sight, I don't see how the situation will improve either.

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Thursday, June 17, 2004 1:01 PM
Maybe they just need a little old bald man, a colorful bus, a catchy tune and...............oh wait, forget it..................;-p
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