Japan’s Universal park in the black

Total sales amounted to $605.6 million

USJ, which operates the Universal Studios theme park in Osaka, moved into the black for the 2006 fiscal year, for the first time since the park opened five years ago.

According to figures released by USJ on Friday, the company recorded ¥3,793 million ($31.87 million) in net income in the fiscal year ended March 31. This compares with the $38.9 million in net loss for the previous period.

Total sales amounted to $605.6 million, up 5.6% for the fiscal year. Attendance grew 4.6% to 8,698,000, boosted by new attractions, including Peter Pan’s Neverland, the Land of Oz, and Hollywood Dream The Ride — a popular roller coaster. Warm winter weather also helped keep the crowds coming.

 Meanwhile, USJ boosted its bottom line by raising admission fees in July and generating strong sales with its attraction reservation booklet. As a result sales per visitor rose 2.3% to $64.21. 

 For the current fiscal year, USJ forecasts a sales gain of 1% to $614 million, while it expects operating income to grow 9.8% to $67.2 million, ordinary income, 13.8% to $50.4 million and net income, 45% to $46.2 million.

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