Disney Shares Jump After Record Profit

November 8, 2018

By Chloe Aiello

Shares of Walt Disney jumped in after-hours trading after the entertainment giant reported record earnings and revenue for its latest fiscal year.

For the quarter ending Sept. 29, Disney ($DIS) reported earnings per share of $1.48 on revenue of $14.31 billion, beating the $1.34 earnings per share on $13.73 billion in revenue analysts were expecting.

Revenue from its Parks and Resorts division rose 9 percent from a year ago to $5.1 billion. Its studio entertainment revenue grew 50 percent to $2.15 billion, helped by strong showings from films like "Incredibles 2," "Ant-Man and the Wasp."

Revenue from its all-important media networks rose 9 percent to nearly $6 billion beating Street expectations, though growth at cable networks like ESPN was up just 5 percent.

The results come as Disney tests the waters for over-the-top offerings to combat cord-cutters turning away from cable. The company launched its ESPN+ streaming option in April and, on its conference call, said the service now has over a million users. It also plans to launch its broader Disney+ service in the U.S. late next year.

Disney hopes its recent purchase of 21st Century Fox ($FOXA) will help supplement its offerings, both for its traditional and OTT offerings. The $71 billion deal got approval from EU regulators this week, as long as Disney sells some of its European TV assets.

“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," Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger said in a statement.