Walt Disney Q2 net jumps 21% to $1.14 bn

Walt Disney Q2 net jumps 21% to $1.14 bn

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MUMBAI: The Walt Disney Company has posted quarterly net income of $1.14 billion for the second quarter ended 31 March, a 21 per cent increase from a profit of $942 million in the year-ago period.

The disastrous performance of ?John Carter? notwithstanding, the company?s revenue for the quarter rose to $9.6 billion, a six per cent increase compared with the same quarter last year, on the back of The Avengers, which shattered domestic box office records with a $207.1 million opening weekend for a global performance of more than $702 million to date.

"With 18 per cent adjusted growth in earnings per share, we?re pleased with our second quarter performance. We?re incredibly optimistic about our future, given the strength of our core brands, Disney, Pixar, Marvel, ESPN, and ABC, and our extraordinary ability to grow franchises across our businesses, such as The Avengers, which shattered domestic box office records with a $207.1 million opening weekend for a global performance of more than $702 million to date,? said Disney Chairman and CEO Robert A. I

Media Networks

The media networks revenues for the quarter increased nine per cent to $4.7 billion and segment operating income increased 13 per cent to $1.7 billion.

Cable Networks

Operating income at cable networks increased $143 million to $1.5 billion for the quarter due to growth at ESPN and, to a lesser extent, at the domestic Disney Channels.

The increase at ESPN was driven by higher affiliate and advertising revenue, partially offset by higher programming and production costs. The increase in affiliate revenue was due to contractual rate increases and a reduction in revenue deferrals related to annual program commitments. During the quarter, ESPN deferred $190 million of revenue compared to $262 million in the prior year quarter.

The decrease was due to a change in the provisions related to annual programming commitments in an affiliate contract. Advertising revenue growth was due to higher rates and a shift in the timing of Rose Bowl, Fiesta Bowl and NBA games relative to the fiscal period end. Higher programming and production costs were driven by the shift in the timing of college bowl and NBA games and higher contractual rates for college basketball programming.

Higher operating income at the domestic Disney Channels was primarily due to increased affiliate revenue from contractual rate increases and higher sales of Disney Channel programs.

Operating income at broadcasting business increased $62 million to $229 million due to lower programming and production costs and higher advertising revenue. Lower programming and production costs were due to the absence of costs for The Oprah Winfrey.

Higher advertising revenues were due to increased primetime rates at the ABC Television Network, partially offset by a decrease at the owned television stations.

Parks and Resorts

Parks and Resorts revenues for the quarter increased 10 per cent to $2.9 billion and segment operating income increased 53 per cent to $222 million. Results for the quarter were driven by increases at domestic parks and resorts, Tokyo Disney Resort and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, partially offset by a decrease at Disneyland Paris.

Higher operating income at domestic parks and resorts was driven by increased guest spending and attendance, partially offset by increased costs. Increased guest spending reflected higher average ticket prices, daily hotel room rates and food, beverage and merchandise spending. Higher costs were driven by labour cost inflation, resort expansion and new guest offerings, volume-related cost increases, and increased investments in systems infrastructure.

The increase at Tokyo Disney Resort reflected the loss of income in the prior-year quarter from the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan, which resulted in a temporary suspension of operations, and the collection of related business interruption insurance proceeds in the current-year quarter. The increase at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort was due to higher guest spending and attendance. The decrease at Disneyland Paris was due to lower attendance and labour cost inflation.

Studio Entertainment

Studio Entertainment revenues decreased 12 per cent to $1.2 billion and segment operating income decreased $161 million to a loss of $84 million.

The decline in operating income was primarily due to lower worldwide theatrical results reflecting the performance of John Carter in the current quarter along with the related film cost write-down. Other titles in the current quarter include The Muppets and Beauty and the Beast 3D while the prior year included Tangled, Tron: Legacy and Mars Needs Moms.

Consumer Products

Consumer Products revenues increased 8 per cent to $679 million and segment operating income increased 4 per cent to $148 million. Higher operating income was primarily due to an increase at Merchandise Licensing, partially offset by lower results at the retail business.

The increase at Merchandise Licensing was primarily due to higher minimum guarantee shortfall recognition in the current quarter and earned revenue growth driven by the performance of Minnie, Mickey, The Avengers and Princess merchandise.

The decrease at the retail business was due to a decline in our North American business driven by decreased margins due to higher promotions.

Interactive Media

Interactive Media revenues for the quarter increased 13 per cent to $179 million and segment operating results improved by $45 million to a loss of $70 million. Operating results were driven by an increase at the games business, reflecting improved results from social and console games.

Social game results were driven by lower acquisition accounting impacts which had a higher adverse impact on the prior-year quarter and improved title performance in the current quarter.

Improved console game results were primarily due to lower product development costs, partially offset by a decline in console game sales, which reflected fewer titles in release in the current year. Lower product development costs reflected the ongoing shift from console games to social and other interactive platforms.

Other Income

On February 2, 2012 the Company increased its percentage ownership in UTV Software Communications Limited (UTV) from 50 per cent to 93 per cent through a delisting process governed by Indian law. In connection with the acquisition, the company recorded a $184 million non-cash gain to adjust the book value of its existing interest in UTV to the estimated fair value.

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