Disney Prepares to Launch Two Streaming Platforms

3 things to watch as Disney reports first-quarter earnings

Disney unveiled its first quarter 2018 results on Tuesday, revealing declines from ESPN and ABC that were offset partially by the big business Star Wars: The Last Jedi has done at the box office.

Disney shares were up as much as 2.9 percent in after-hours trading - after closing the regular session at $106.17, ahead 1.4 percent. Studio entertainment revenues declined 1 percent to $2.50 billion and consumer products & interactive media division revenues decreased 2 percent to $1.45 billion.

For its first fiscal quarter, which ended on December 30, Disney had net income of $4.42 billion, or $2.91 a share, compared with $2.48 billion, or $1.55 a share, a year earlier.

ESPN has a message for those thinking about cutting the cord: Keep the cord and layer streaming services on top of it. The network is attached to a large number of basic cable packages, and when people drop cable its numbers dip.

How that will fly with consumers remains to be seen when the service launches sometime in Spring. "If anything points to the future that ESPN looks like, it will be this app and the experience it provides", he said. With Fox under Disney's belt, coupled with a new streaming service poised to kickstart by next year, the "content king" has paved "a clear runway to gain market and mind share from the likes of Netflix". We had hoped there would be more slicing and dicing of the rights to give a wealth of different purchase options (e.g. buying an incremental National Hockey League pack or an MLB pack) but perhaps this will the next version of the service. And they'll be paying $4.99 a month for the streaming subscription itself.

ESPN Plus which will live stream sporting events that aren't broadcast on the primary ESPN stations.

The streaming service will also include ESPN's popular 30 for 30 documentary series, which focuses on sports personalities and events throughout history.

Fueling the growth was the 2017 openings of Minion Park in Japan and Orlando's Volcano Bay, as well as The Wizarding World of Harry Potter that opened in 2016 in Hollywood, the company said. The company added that the price of its service will be lower than other streaming platforms since it wouldn't stream as many movies and shows as other services initially.

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