That sounds like a lot of content – and it is – but as Recode highlights, it’s not the type of stuff you really want to watch. Disney and Netflix announced a year ago that its landmark streaming deal will expire by the end of 2019, but not all films will leave the platform immediately. Revenue related to video games increased, Disney said, but not enough to offset setbacks including lower licensing revenue from merchandise based on “Frozen”.
“The strategic investments we’ve made have driven meaningful growth over the long term, and we remain confident in our ability to continue to deliver significant shareholder value”, Disney CEO Robert Iger said. Disney said it earned an adjusted $1.89 a share, compared to the $1.61 that Wall Street expected for the quarter ending. That marked a 1 percent increase versus the year-ago period; meanwhile, the broadcast unit saw revenues dip 3 percent to $1.75 billion.
Shares of Disney rose 1 percent during regular trading on Tuesday and advanced another 1 percent after the closing bell when its earnings results were revealed. We expect Disney’s theme parks to be an important driver for its long-term growth due to its global expansion. The division also posted growth in Europe and at its cruise business. In November, Disney said it plans to price its service “substantially below” that of Netflix, in part because it would initially have a smaller library than what the streaming giant offers.
Exclusive and original content help media companies market their direct-to-consumer offerings. Box office successes in the quarter included “Thor: Ragnarok”, which collected $852.7 million worldwide (26 percent more than “Doctor Strange” took in a year earlier).
Disney’s movie studio turned out three blockbusters in the quarter. Analysts’ outlook called for revenue of $6.35 billion in this category.
Still, Disney’s enthusiasm for the brand isn’t waning.
The Star Wars movies – like the previously announced Rian Johnson Star Wars movies, two planned Star Wars TV properties, and likely the entire Star Wars catalog at some point down the road – will stream exclusively on the new streaming service that Disney plans to launch in late 2019. That deal is still pending regulatory approval. Disney last month gave about 125,000 USA employees a one-time $1,000 bonus and announced plans to put $50 million toward helping hourly employees with tuition expenses.