Hello Kitty Theme Park Set To Open In China
Japan's Sanrio Company, parent to the feline, announced plans this week to partner with China's Shanghai Insight Holdings (Group) Co., on what will be the first Hello Kitty park outside Japan, reports the Wall Street Journal.
Sanrio currently operates Hello Kitty-themed Puroland, outside Tokyo (the staff of which is pictured at left), and Harmonyland in the southern part of the country.
Expected to draw a million visitors annually, the new park will be targeted at families with preteen children and young women who collect Hello Kitty merchandise, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Construction on the 150-acre, $215 million park is expected to begin this July in Zhejiang province, about three hours west of Shanghai.
Hello Kitty has been around since 1974, and, along with her cartoon "friends", has fueled an industry with sales of 50,000 products -- including dolls, clothes, accessories, electronic products, and even cars-- in 109 countries and territories, according to the International Business Times.
It was recently announced that China would also be getting a Disneyland park, also to be completed in 2014.
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