Apr 8, 2011
By Sarah Tully
The Orange County Register
The Disneyland Resort generates about $4.7 billion to the Southern California economy each year, Disney announced Friday.
The figure includes taxes and tourist dollars.
George Kalogridis, president of the Disneyland Resort, revealed the numbers during a State of the Resort speech on Friday. They come from an independent report that the company commissioned last year.
The Disneyland Resort is Orange County’s largest private employer that includes two theme parks, three hotels and the Downtown Disney entertainment-shopping district in Anaheim. About 400 people, community leaders and other invited guests, attended the speech at the Grand Californian Hotel.
The report, by CB Richard Ellis, is the first conducted by the company in about five years. Disney declined to release a full report and details about how the numbers were compiled.
Kalogridis gave excerpts from the report in his speech, his first since taking the job in October 2009. See a profile about George Kalogridis at the Disneyland Resort.
Other figures released:
- The resort generates about $255 million annually in taxes to local cities, counties and the state. The taxes are from hotel stays, sales, property and income taxes, Kalogridis said.
- About 21,000 employees work at the resort.
- Locally, the resort supports 57,400 jobs in Southern California.
- About 1,000 jobs were created for the expansion project of Disney California Adventure. When the makeover is completed next year, the number is expected to double to 2,000 jobs.
“During the recent economic downturn, we surged ahead, strengthening our investment and capitalizing on the recovery,” Kalogridis said in his prepared speech. “We wanted to make sure when the economy bounced back, we were there, ready, with the best park experience we could possibly offer.”
A Disney official said that the latest report could not be compared to previous ones, as the method of making the calculations change.
Lucy Dunn, president of the Orange County Business Council, said the Disneyland Resort has helped Orange County stay ahead with lower unemployment numbers than other areas during the economic slump.
“It allows us a competitive advantage over other areas,” Dunn said. “The resort is the heartbeat of Orange County.”
The California Adventure expansion should help make even more money.
“That will bring in people, excitement, curiosity and more people to Anaheim,” said Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait. “That’s a great thing.”