SVOD takes subs hit in mixed Q3 for Disney | Major Businesses | Business | News | Rapid TV News
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Like all major players in the media industry, the Walt Disney company has been buffeted by the screen actors’ strike and economic belt tightening in key markets and the effects of these headwinds have been shown clearly in the company’s latest financial results.
Disney Multi Brand 12Feb2021
For the third quarter of its current fiscal year ended 1 July 2023, the company pasoxt2ed overall revenues of $22.33 billion, up 4% compared with the same time a year ago, leading to a nine-month total of $65.657 billion, an annual increase of 8%. However, the company recorded a $460 million Net income (loss) from continuing operations, compared with a profit of $1.409 billion at the of the third quarter a year ago.

Drilling deeper into the Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution line performance showed this mixed picture. Linear networks revenues for the quarter decreased 7% annually to $6.7 billion, with operating income decreasing 23% to $1.9 billion. US Channels revenues for the quarter decreased 4% to $5.5 billion, and operating income decreased 14% to $1.8 billion. The decrease in operating income was due to lower results at both the Broadcasting and Cable business lines. The decrease at Broadcasting was due to lower results at ABC and the owned television stations, both of which reflected lower advertising revenue.

By contrast, Direct-to-Consumer revenues for the quarter increased 9% year-on-year to $5.5 billion and operating loss decreased to $0.5 billion from a loss of $1.1 billion. The decrease in operating loss was due to a lower loss at flagship SVOD service Disney+, higher operating income at Hulu and a lower loss at ESPN+.

In terms of subs growth, Disney+ lost 300,000 customers in the US and Canada over the course of the last three months to total 46 million, while international subs inched up 2% to 59.7 million. The latter figure excluded Disney+ Hotstar which ended the quarter with 40.4 million subscribers, plummeting 24% compared with April 2023. ESPN+ subs stayed steady at 25.2 million as did total Hulu on 48.2 million.

Looking to maximise revenues, the company announced that it would be introducing an ad-supported tier Disney+ offering in select markets across Europe and in Canada beginning 1 November. This was being done after what was said to be a successful introduction in the US where will have access to a new ad-free bundled subscription plan, starting 6 September featuring Disney+ Premium and Hulu (No Ads) for $19.99/month.