“At Paramount, I learned brand expertise; at Herschend, crafting a purpose-driven culture; at SeaWorld, rebuilding a brand story,” said Anthony Esparza. He has now launched Esparza HQ, a consultancy to assist and advise brands, licensors of intellectual property (IP), operators and developers to create meaningful guest experiences in the global, location-based entertainment (LBE) space.
Esparza HQ is built on its principal’s 30+ years’ experience with leading owner-operators: SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment (Chief Creative Officer), Herschend Family Entertainment (CCO/SVP, Guest Experiences) and Paramount Parks/VIACOM (SVP, Design+Entertainment). Each tenure added a new dimension to Esparza’s understanding of the industry.
“Each of those companies had multiple park properties. Each year we conceived and built anywhere from 10-40 projects – over three decades. That wealth of project and business experience has given me a sort of ‘night vision’ to help drive a project to its destination, to reach its business goal, be purposeful, and operationally sound,” said Esparza.
His mission with Esparza HQ is “to create destinations and experiences with purpose,” including theme park attractions, learning and education experiences, cultural attractions, resorts and hospitality, cruise lines, immersive digital experiences, family entertainment centers (FECs), seasonal attractions and more.
“LBE platforms are a powerful way to share a meaningful message and bring a grand vision to life in a memorable way, anywhere in the world,” said Esparza. “We are seeing a whole new level of IP immersion unfold today in the LBE space. But it’s a challenging and complex process, and each project is its own ‘magic mix.’
In Esparza’s view, there are six primary business deliverables for a project. “Each is a requirement and each is a challenge –
As a business leader privy to C-level strategy and execution as well as a creative, Esparza brings his own magic mix to the table. “I can translate strategy into content that drives business. I speak the language of a designer and a business leader. I can be a guide for those that need both.”
Esparza places emphasis on positive purpose. “Our work is most effective when it has positive purpose and that purpose is shared by everyone in the company and on the project. The world can be fun… and meaningful. Everything we do in this industry can be part of creating a positive and a better world. And if you get all the important things right, you can build something influential that inspires others – leading to the next grand vision.”
He will be in Orlando at the 2018 IAAPA Attractions Expo in search of new partners, new challenges and purposeful projects. “I love this industry and I’m excited about the future.”
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