Disney ‘no hurry to go OTT’

Disney-AnytimeThe Walt Disney Company has delivered quarterly earnings and revenue that were largely in line with expectations – but revenue generated by the company’s media networks disappointed.

The company, which operates the ESPN and ABC television networks, said revenue from its cable and broadcasting sectors rose to $5.22 billion – up 5 per cent from a year ago but down on the $5.25 billion analysts had expected.

Revenue rose to $12.39 billion from $11.57 billion – notably lifted by the success of summer blockbuster Guardians of the Galaxy – and also driven by record park attendance and strong studio sales.

As rival media companies, including CBS, consider offering direct-to-consumer options to target cord cutters, Disney CEO Bob Iger told CNBC that cable or satellite packages still have value and he is in no rush to abandon bundles.

He said the company might experiment with direct-to-consumer services in the future but it is “taking a cautious approach.”

Disney wants to “maintain what is obviously a value creator for this company and for a lot of other companies in the media industry,” Iger said, referring to cable packages.

The number of homes with multichannel bundles are “down ever so slightly from a year ago … [but] it’s still the dominate package that consumers are buying,” Iger said.

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