Disney’s domination at the global box office and its plans to take on Netflix will be centre stage when it reports its latest results this week, with films from Avengers: Endgame to The Lion King driving its best year ever on the big screen.
The share price of the world’s biggest entertainment company has surged by more than a quarter over the past year, making for a $260bn (£214bn) stock market valuation as it continues to dominate cinemas while plotting its streaming future with the launch of its rival to Netflix later this year.
Last week Disney, which will report its latest quarterly results on Tuesday, broke its annual worldwide box office record, taking $7.67bn after only seven months. Avengers: Endgame has surpassed Avatar as the highest-grossing film of all time ($2.8bn). And Disney has already equalled its record of four $1bn-plus blockbusters in a year (Captain Marvel, Aladdin, The Lion King) with Frozen 2 and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker still to come.
Disney’s strength – after the $71bn deal to buy X-Men to Deadpool-maker Fox it controls 40% of the US movie market – comes from its carefully curated depth of content.
The company is reaping the benefits of a six-year buying spree of top-quality-content businesses, snapping up the Toy Story maker Pixar ($7.4bn), Marvel Studios ($4bn), and Star Wars maker Lucasfilm ($4bn) between 2006 and 2012.
However, Disney’s upcoming results are likely to show a drop in profits as it spends heavily on breaking into the global streaming market, dominated by Netflix and Amazon, with its rival Disney+ service scheduled to launch in the US on 12 November.
Disney has priced it at $6.99, close to half of Netflix US’s most popular tier, and is willing to swallow hundreds of millions in lost licensing revenue until it turns its first expected profit in 2024.
Last month $18bn was wiped off the value of Netflix after it lost subscribers in its biggest market, the US, for the first time in eight years. Competition is set to further intensify over the next year as streaming services from NBC Universal, AT&T’s HBO Max and Apple are launched.
Source: Read Full Article