Disney is set to close 100 of its cable television channels this year as it continues its move towards a streaming future.
Speaking at JPMorgan’s annual Global Technology, Media, and Telecommunications Conference, The Walt Disney Company’s Chief Executive, Bob Chapek, revealed the plans to shut down the international channels in favour of placing its Disney+ streaming service at the forefront.
He added that “when the time is right to really stomp on the gas”, the Disney will “go even stronger into our direct-to-consumer platforms for sports”.
“We closed 30 channels in Fiscal Year 2020 or in 2020. We plan to close 100 in 2021,” Chapek said. “We will continue at a robust rate […] the great majority of that content will migrate to Disney+. The decisions that we make in individual channels and individual markets, and the timing of such, are sort of framed up by existing deals […] some of the constraints we’ve got there. But as you can see, that continues to be a core strategy for us as we pivot toward direct-to-consumer.”
Chapek’s comments come a few weeks after Disney confirmed it would close its sports channels in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong this October, signalling another move towards a streaming future.