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Walt Disney's Q3 net rises on TV, films and theme parks

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MUMBAI: Media conglomerate Walt Disney reported a higher quarterly profit from strong performances by its television, films and theme parks businesses.

The company's fiscal third quarter net income rose to $1.13 billion, from $811 million last year. Its total revenue increased 12 per cent to $8.6 billion.

"Disney's strong third-quarter financial results demonstrate the company's unique ability to leverage great content across our many businesses. In recent months, we have released such highly successful creative product as Cars, High School Musical and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, all of which are having a positive impact throughout our company, from merchandise sales to the internet to home video to our theme parks By investing in our pre-eminent core brands and adopting new platforms to enhance the entertainment experience, we intend to deliver our content to more people, more often, in more places, and thereby also deliver long-term growth to our shareholders," said Walt Disney CEO Robert Iger.

The revenues of the Media Networks division of the company for the quarter increased 10 per cent to $ 3.7 billion and segment operating income increased five per cent to $1.2 billion. The growth in segment operating income was due to improved performance at Cable Networks, partially offset by a decline at Broadcasting.

The operating income at Cable Networks increased $130 million to $ 969 million for the quarter primarily due to growth at ESPN. The increase at ESPN was driven by higher affiliate revenues from contractual rate increases, increased recognition of previously deferred revenues from higher ratings. During the quarter, ESPN recognised $ 106 million of previously deferred programming commitment revenues compares to $ 42 million in the prior-year quarter driven by new programming commitment provisions in affiliate contracts. The revenue increases at ESPN were partially offset by higher programming expenses, due to the new Major League Baseball rights agreement and increased costs associated with ESPN branded mobile phone services.

Disney's operating incomes at Broadcasting decreased $ 70 million to $ 183 million due to higher programming expenses at the ABC Television Network, the increased number of costs of pilot productions and costs associated with the launch of Disney branded mobile phone service, partially offset by increased revenue due to higher advertising rates at the BC Television Network.

Parks and Resorts revenues increased 11 per cent to $ 2.7 billion and segment operating income grew 26 per cent to $ 549 million due to increases at both its domestic resorts and at Disneyland Resort Paris.

Studio Entertainment revenues increased 17 per cent to $ 1.7 billion and segment operating income increased $ 284 million to $ 240 million.

On the other hand, Consumer Products revenues increased sic per cent to $ 445 million and segment operating income increased 69 per cent to $ 105 million.

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