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Disney+Hotstar crosses 26 mn subs, makes up 30% of Disney’s global base

Disney+Hotstar is offered in 7 languages and has over 17000 hours of content.

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New Delhi: The Walt Disney Company conducted its annual Investor 2020 day where it shed light on the current properties and the future plans associated with them. Several executives - including media & entertainment distribution chirman Kareem Daniel, Disney+ and ESPN+  president Michale Paull,  international operations and D2C chairman Rebecca Campbell, Hulu president Kelly Campbell, ESPN and sports content chairman Jimmy Pitaro, Walt Disney Television entertainment chairman Dana Walden, FX chairman John Landgraf, Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, National Geographic content president Courteney Monroe, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Productions president Sean Bailey, Walt Disney Animation Studios chief creatie officer Jennifer Lee, Pixar chief creative officer Pete Docter, Marvel Sutidos president and Marvel chief creative officer Kevin Feige, executive chairman &  chairman of the board  Bob Iger, senior executive vice president & chief financial officer Christine McCarthy - spoke at length about their progress of their charges and the milestones they have set for them globally and in the US. 

McCarthy shared that Disney+ Hotstar subscribers accounted for 30 per cent of Disney+'s 86.8 million subscriber base as of December 2, 2020. This accounts for nearly 26 million sign ups for the OTT platform in India. One of the primary drivers for this has been its partnership with Jio. 

This accounts for nearly 7.5 million increase in the subscriber in the last two months, as the last reported numbers on the Hotstar’s subscriber base were 18.5 million in September 2020.

Indian Premier League has clearly played a strong role in increasing this subscriber base.

Disney+Hotstar is currently offered in seven languages and has over 17,000 hours of original local programming. It also plans to expand Disney+ Hotstar to more markets. The service is currently available in India and Indonesia.

“With a rapidly growing middle class, India is a promising market opportunity and we are uniquely positioned to succeed in the country due to our existing presence with Star TV and Hotstar,” added Campbell.

McCarthy further mentioned that Disney+ Hotstar is expected to contribute 30-40 per cent of its projected paid subscriber base of 230-260 million by 2024. It also expects to become profitable in the same year.

Disney+ has added over 16 million subscribers to it already existing 73.7 million global subscriber base pool (reported in the last earnings call).

The overall portfolio of the organisation including Hulu, ESPN+ and Disney+ includes over 137 million plus paid subscribers. This includes – Hulu (38.8 million), ESPN+ (11.5 million) and Disney + (86.8 million). The company shared its expectations to hit 300 – 350 million subscriber base by 2024.

The executives  further announced that the company  will include its general entertainment content brand Star on Disney+ in a few international markets. It will be launched in Latin America in June 20201 while in Europe, Canada, Australia-New Zealand, and Singapore the date has been set as  February 2021. Star has a huge library of television shows and movies and thousands of hours of local programming content including content from multiple sources - Disney Television Studios, FX, 20th Century Studios, 20th Television, and others. The cost for service in ANZ, Europe, Canada and Singapore will be at 8.99 euros.

The company also revealed its original content slate over the next few years. Disney+ plans to release approximately 10 Star Wars series and 10 Marvel series, as well as 15 Disney live-action, Disney Animation, and Pixar series, as well as 15 Disney live-action, Disney Animation, and Pixar features.

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