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Broad-based revenue growth lifts Disney’s Q4 earnings; stock gains

Entertainment conglomerate Walt Disney Company (DIS) reported strong earnings growth for the fourth quarter when revenues rose sharply with contributions from the Parks & Resorts and Studio Entertainment businesses. The results surpassed estimates and the company’s stock gained Thursday in the after-hours.

The Walt Disney Company Q4 2018 earnings infographic
The Walt Disney Company Q4 2018 earnings infographic

Adjusted earnings jumped 38% year-over-year to $1.48 per share during the three-month period, and exceeded the Wall Street projection. Reported net income was $2.32 billion or $1.55 per share, higher than $1.75 billion or $1.13 per share reported in the same period last year.

Revenues advanced 12% annually to $14.31 billion in the September quarter, with contributions from all the major business segments. The top-line came in above the street view. Revenues of the Media Networks and Parks & Resorts segments grew 9% each during the quarter, with both domestic and international locations witnessing heavy footfall.

Revenues of the Media Networks and Parks & Resorts segments grew 9% each during the quarter

Studio Entertainment revenue surged 50%, reflecting the blockbuster theatrical releases led by Black Panther, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Avengers: Infinity War and Incredibles 2. Meanwhile, the Consumer Products & Interactive Media unit registered an 8% fall, hurt by lower advertising revenue that was partially offset by higher affiliate revenues and income from program sales.

“We remain focused on the successful completion and integration of our 21st Century Fox acquisition and the further development of our direct-to-consumer business, including the highly anticipated launch of our Disney-branded streaming service late next year,” said Disney CEO Robert Iger.

Disney shines on box office hits; stock dips as Q3 earnings miss

Disney is currently in the midst of a game-changing diversification into direct-to-consumer entertainment offerings, with the aim of competing with streaming majors like Netflix Inc. (NFLX) and Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN). The service will be launched using the entertainment assets of 21st Century Fox (FOXA), which the company acquired recently,  including its storied film and television studios.

Disney’s stock reached a three-year high last month and rose about 11% over the past twelve months. The stock gained further in the after-hours Thursday following the earnings report.

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