In the land where “dreams come true,” things are looking rosy.
The Walt Disney Company said its first quarter earnings results for fiscal 2020 beat expectations, as revenue hit US$20.86 billion, a 36% increase compared to the prior-year quarter, Xinhua reported.
It was the US entertainment giant’s first earnings report since the launch of its streaming service, Disney+, on Nov. 12, 2019, the report said.
Diluted earnings per share from continuing operations for the quarter ending Dec. 28 decreased 37% to $1.17 from $1.86 from a year ago. Excluding certain items affecting comparability, diluted EPS for the quarter decreased 17% to $1.53 from $1.84 in the prior-year quarter, the report said.
“We had a strong first quarter, highlighted by the launch of Disney+, which has exceeded even our greatest expectations,” said Robert A. Iger, chairman and chief executive officer of the Walt Disney Company.
“Thanks to our incredible collection of brands, outstanding content from our creative engines and state-of-the-art technology, we believe our direct-to-consumer services, including Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu, position us well for continued growth in today’s dynamic media environment,” he noted.
Disney said that its Media Network revenues for the quarter increased 24% to US$7.4 billion and segment operating income increased 23% to US$1.6 billion, the report said.
Studio Entertainment revenues for the quarter increased from US$1.8 billion to US$3.8 billion and segment operating income increased from US$309 million to US$948 million, the report said.
The increase in theatrical distribution results was due to the performance of “Frozen II” and “Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker” in the current quarter compared to “Ralph Breaks the Internet” in the prior-year quarter, according to the company.
The prior-year quarter also included “Mary Poppins Returns” and “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” and the current quarter included “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil.”
Parks, Experiences and Products revenues for the quarter increased 8% to US$7.4 billion, and segment operating income increased 9% to US$2.3 billion. Operating income growth for the quarter was due to increases in merchandise licensing and domestic parks and resorts, partially offset by lower results at Disney’s international parks and resorts, the report said.
The decrease in operating income at the company’s international parks and resorts was due to lower results at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, partially offset by growth at Shanghai Disney Resort.
“Lower results at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort were due to decreases in attendance and occupied room nights reflecting the impact of recent events. At Shanghai Disney Resort, higher operating income was driven by an increase in attendance,” the company said.