U.S. entertainment giant, The Walt Disney Company, reported its Q1 earnings results for fiscal 2020 on, beating expectations.
It’s Disney’s first earnings report since the launch of its streaming service, Disney+, on November 12, 2019. Revenue for the quarter hit 20.86 billion U.S. dollars, a 36 percent increase compared to the prior-year quarter, surpassing the 20.79 to 20.81 billion dollars in revenue that some analysts had expected.
Diluted earnings per share (EPS) from continuing operations for the quarter ending Dec. 28 decreased 37 percent to 1.17 dollars from 1.86 dollars from a year ago. Excluding certain items affecting comparability, diluted EPS for the quarter decreased 17 percent to 1.53 dollars from 1.84 dollars in the prior-year quarter.
“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 in the press release.
“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 Networks revenues for the quarter increased 24 percent to 7.4 billion dollars and segment operating income increased 23 percent to 1.6 billion dollars.
Studio Entertainment revenues for the quarter increased from 1.8 billion dollars to 3.8 billion dollars and segment operating income increased from 309 million dollars to 948 million dollars. 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. 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,” according to the company.
Parks, Experiences and Products revenues for the quarter increased 8 percent to 7.4 billion dollars, and segment operating income increased 9 percent to 2.3 billion dollars. 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 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.