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Disney earnings preview: Here’s what we’re watching for and why

The Walt Disney Company will report earnings for its fiscal first quarter this afternoon. Here are three things we’re watching for from the media and entertainment giant.

Studio growth: Ever since Disney scooped up Lucasfilm, it’s been boom times for its studio entertainment unit. This is typically Disney’s third-largest revenue generator (behind Media Networks and Parks & Resorts) but it’s critically important for the company’s role as a steward of brands. For Disney, the movies matter. We’ll be looking for impact from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and Moana.
ESPN subscriber losses: Disney’s all-important cable TV segment is under increasing threat from cord-cutting and streaming. ESPN—the most expensive network on cable—is seen as a barometer for both Disney and the industry as a whole.
Will he stay or will he go? Bob Iger’s impending departure looms heavily over Disney’s future, particularly because no worthy successor has been found. Reports emerged this week that Iger may extend his tenure. We’ll be looking for a solid yes or no on those rumors.

[Photo: Lucasfilm]

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