West Euro DTC launch date revealed as Disney claims solid Q4 | Major Businesses | Business
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Days before it steams into the direct-to-consumer market in the US, Netherlands and Australasia, Disney has reported a fourth quarter that it says reflects the strength of its brands and certainly shows the amount of cash ploughed into its new business line .
Disney Verizon 23Oct2019
Overall, the House of Mouse reported total Q4 revenues of $19.1 billion, up 34% on an annual basis and for the full year revenues totalled $69. 57 billion, up 17% compared with the same period in 2019. Net income was $785 million for the fourth quarter, tumbling 66% annually, and for the year the total slipped back 17% $10.441 billion. Disney was keen to note that both the quarterly and yearly totals reflected the acquisition of 21st Century Fox and as a consequence a larger interest in the Hulu over-the-top service.

Looking at individual businesses, segment operating income decreased at both the Direct-to-Consumer & International and Studio Entertainment lines. The company noted that the decrease at Direct-to-Consumer & International was due to the consolidation of Hulu, its ongoing investment in the ESPN+ direct-to-consumer service and costs to support the launch of Disney+ which, CEO Bob Iger revealed in the official analysts' report, will come to select Western Europe markets including the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain on 31 March 2020.

Revenues for Media Networks in the fourth quarter, including cable networks and broadcasting, increased 22% annually to $6.5 billion, and segment operating income decreased 3% to $1.8 billion.

Drilling down, Cable Networks revenues for the quarter increased 20% to $4.2 billion and operating income decreased $19 million to $1.3 billion. Lower operating income was due to a decrease at ESPN, partially offset by the consolidation of 21st Century Fox businesses. Broadcasting revenues for the quarter increased 26% to $2.3 billion and operating income decreased $17 million to $377 million. The decrease in operating income was due to lower results at the company’s legacy operations, partially offset by the consolidation of 21st Century Fox programme sales.

It is fair to say that most of the interest in the Disney quarterly results was in Direct-to-Consumer & International where revenues for the quarter increased from $0.8 billion to $3.4 billion but segment operating loss increased from $340 million to $740 million, reflecting the consolidation of Hulu, costs associated with the upcoming launch of Disney+ and ongoing investment in ESPN+, which was launched in April 2018. These decreases were partially offset by a benefit from the inclusion of the 21st Century Fox businesses driven by income at Star India.