Disney cancels construction of a $900 million campus in Florida

Disney throws in the towel. Amid political tensions with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, the American cinema giant has announced that it is abandoning the construction of a $900 million campus near its amut park in this southern state. is from the United States. The campus was expected to attract approximately 2,000 company employees.

Disney justified this choice by recent changes in its strategy: a new boss, Bob Iger , a new less favorable business environment and a desire to reduce costs. The project was announced in July 2021. For these reasons, “we have decided not to continue construction of the campus”, explained Josh D’Amaro, the manager of amut parks.

However, this decision also comes at the heart of a political battle between Disney and local authorities, which have operated a conservative turn in recent years, with an offensive against the supposed “woke”.

” Revenge “

It is Ron DeSantis , one of the Republicans’ rising stars and potential primary candidate for the party, which leads Florida. He considers the company too progressive: last year, Disney denounced a bill aimed at restricting the teaching of subjects related to orientation and gender identity in elementary schools in the state.

As a result, Ron DeSantis terminated, in February, with special Disney status in this State, a status which the company had enjoyed since the 1960s. This facility offered it, in particular, an acceleration of administrative procedures and easier borrowing.

The conservative governor has also put forward the idea of ​​building a prison on the outskirts of the Disney World park, or even introducing new taxes on the hotels on the site, which employs 75,000 people and attracts 50 million visitors a year. Disney has filed a complaint and believes that these acts stem from “targeted revenge” against the company to punish it for exercising its “freedom of expression”.

Political consequences

The case has already had political repercussions. Ron DeSantis, who could announce his candidacy soon in the Republican primary against former President Donald Trump, has been strongly criticized by the latter. Thursday, Donald Trump thus reproached his opponent for having lost “all alone” the investment of the group.

“Ron DeSantis’ failed conflict with Disney hasn’t really helped his phantom and wobbly campaign,” the billionaire said in a statement. For some members of the Republican Party, operating against an American company is contrary to the historical values ​​of the party.

With AFP

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