Since his return, Disney CEO Bob Iger has been like Santa Claus. He has been giving out presents to every good Disney fan. Iger has returned all the gifts that the Grinch, former CEO Bob Chapek, took away from us. But unlike Santa Claus, Iger delivered to us in hopes of providing higher revenues to his investors.
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Iger has returned Disney fans free parking at all Walt Disney World Resorts. He brought back the annual passes. And just this past week, Iger and Disney brought back almost everything we could have wanted. Disney announced that the Disney Dining Plan would be returning, the Park Reservation system was going away, and Disney would finally be making changes to the Disney Genie+ system. Now if he would only bring back the Magic Express and luggage service, we might build a statue for him.
It was Christmas morning, and Santa Iger delivered for us. But next comes the earnings call with investors, and despite the popularity of Disney Parks’ popularity, Iger will have to deliver some harsh realities about the Walt Disney Company as a whole.
According to Reuters, the Walt Disney Company is expected to show solid profits from its Parks division, but overall revenue for the company will remain relatively stagnate. The overall revenues of the Walt Disney Company are being dragged down by Disney’s streaming services, Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+.
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Disney+ is expected to have added 1.3 million new subscribers in the first quarter of 2023. In the first quarter of 2022, Disney+ added 7.9 million new subscribers. The loss of subscribers is driving down revenues for Disney’s streaming services, and analysts expected Iger to announce a $750 million loss in streaming.
The writer’s strike is also going to affect Disney’s profits negatively. Subscribers are hungry for new content; without writers, there won’t be any new content anytime soon.
Brandon Katz of Parrot Analytics told Reuters:
A roughly 90-day strike would enable many companies to reduce content spend for a quarter and clean up their books in the short term. Yet on a long enough timeline, the slowdown of new content would likely lead to an increase in (subscriber) churn at a time when every major media player is striving for streaming profitability.
Disney and other Hollywood Studios are currently negotiating with the Directors Guild of America, whose contract expires at the end of June. So, it is possible that both the writer and director guilds will be on strike this summer, effectively shutting down any production in Hollywood until they can come to an agreement.
Analysts are expecting that Bob Iger is going to announce that Disney Parks are doing quite well. Disney Parks are expected to see a 14 percent increase in revenue and a 20 percent increase in profit, which will help to offset the losses in streaming.
We can only hope that Santa Iger won’t turn into the Grinch after he delivers this news to investors.
We will keep you updated on this story at Disney Fanatic.