Despite the unfriendly economy, the Walt Disney Company is planning to spend exorbitant amounts on turning its 340 Disney stores into places akin to amusement parks as well as opening new stores including a possible flagship location in Times Square.
In collaboaration with Steve Jobs and a retail team at Apple, Walt Disney is considering rebranding the Disney stores to ‘Imagination Park.’ The chain’s typical toy and apparel displays will give way to a hi-tech makeover that includes new recreational activities like theatres to watch film clips, sing karaoke, and chat live with Disney Channel stars.
According to The New York Times, the goal is to make children excited to visit and possibly stay longer, which could boost sales. Says Jim Fielding, the President of Disney Stores, "The world does not need another place to sell Disney merchandise—this only works if it’s an experience."
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