Oh, the mouse is roaring.
Disney’s paid streaming subscribers have come to the rescue, providing the entertainment mammoth its first quarterly profit since early last year.
The Disney earnings report for the first fiscal quarter of the year showed the stock was up around 1.7% after hours.
The surprise quarterly profit, announced on Thursday, was due in part to “The Mandalorian” and “Soul” lifting its fast-growing streaming business.
Earnings per share: 32 cents adjusted vs. loss of 41 cents expected, according to Refinitiv
Revenue: $16.25 billion vs. $15.9 billion expected, according to Refinitiv
Streaming: Disney said it now has almost 95 million paid subscribers to its Disney+ streaming service as of the quarter ended Jan. 2, and that certainly helps to offset the damage COVID-19 has done to its theme parks.
The earnings report comes during the first quarter after Disney’s free-trial period ended for some subscribers who are also Verizon customers.
On the conference call, the Disney CFO, Christine McCarthy, said fellow execs are “really happy with the conversion numbers that we’ve seen there going from the promotion to become paid subscribers.”
So how many paid subscribers is Disney claiming?
The number reported is more than 146 million across its streaming services as of the end of the first quarter.
Not surprising: Disney’s parks, experiences and products segment fell, big-time.
The slide was reported to be 53%, to $3.58 billion, as many of theme parks were closed or operating at reduced capacity. Disney cruise ships and guided tours also were suspended.
CEO Bob Chapek pins the company’s immediate hopes on vaccines.
Chapek said parks revenue and reopening is “really going to be determined by the rate of vaccination of the public.” Disneyland itself, according to Chapek, has already delivered more than 100,000 doses.