The Walt Disney Company (DIS) - NYSE
  • Mon, Mar. 28, 5:09 PM
    • It was a tale of two fortunes at the box office over a U.S. holiday weekend, with Warner Bros. reaping the benefits of a long-awaited superhero launch.
    • Time Warner (NYSE:TWX) rose 3.6% today as a critically panned Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice still rolled to a $166.1M domestic gross and more than $424M globally. That's almost Warner's biggest domestic opening -- final numbers put it just behind Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 -- and the biggest domestic opening weekend ever in March (passing The Hunger Games' $152.5M).
    • The film's having no trouble selling tickets despite negative reviews: Aggregator Rotten Tomatoes still has the film about 29% positive reaction, and it's drawn an (audience-based) CinemaScore of a flat B -- with a B-minus coming form the males that are making up 62% of the film's clientele.
    • Meanwhile, Hunger Games studio Lions Gate Entertainment (LGF +1.6%) rose today despite a serious drop-off in receipts for its The Divergent Series: Allegiant, which drew just $9.5M in its second week ($46.6M cumulative). The film's proving a letdown, and there's still another sequel in that series, Ascendant, yet to come in summer 2017.
    • Behind the dueling heroes, Zootopia (DIS +0.9%) took second with $23.1M, bringing its domestic total to $240.5M, and a counterprogrammed My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (CMCSA +0.1%) logged $18.1M for the No. 3 spot.
    • Previously: IMAX scores big from Batman vs. Superman opening (Mar. 28 2016)
    • Previously: 'Batman v Superman' nails box office record (Mar. 28 2016)
    | Mon, Mar. 28, 5:09 PM | 4 Comments
  • Mon, Mar. 21, 10:08 AM
    • Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE:LGF) is off 3.1% after Allegiant -- its latest hope for young-adult franchise success -- faded over the weekend in the face of Zootopia.
    • Expected to compete with Zootopia (NYSE:DIS) for the box office lead, Allegiant (the latest in the Divergent series) grossed $29M for the No. 2 spot. Zootopia's $38M gave it its third straight weekend on top.
    • Allegiant's flat weekend led Stifel Nicolaus to downgrade LGF shares, to Hold from Buy. The Divergent series has been heavily watched by investors looking to see whether Lions Gate will duplicate its successes from its Twilight and The Hunger Games film series. Last week, Macquarie had reduced its price target on Lions Gate to $31 (maintaining its Outperform rating); shares are trading currently at $21.92.
    • For its part, Zootopia has a cumulative domestic gross of $201.8M and a worldwide total of $591.7M.
    • Allegiant did outpace the other wide-release newcomer, Miracles from Heaven (NYSE:SNE), which fell into No. 3 with $15M, just ahead of 10 Cloverfield Lane (VIA, VIAB) with $12.5M and Deadpool (FOX, FOXA) with $8M in its sixth week.
    | Mon, Mar. 21, 10:08 AM | 4 Comments
  • Mon, Mar. 14, 3:14 PM
    • Zootopia (DIS +1%) ruled for a second weekend at the box office, drawing $50M to outpace a strong debut from a more suspenseful new release.
    • The Disney record-setter held a strong chunk of its opening-week audience and even increased its international take, thanks to substantial grosses from China. It's made $142.6M domestically and a worldwide total of $431.3M so far.
    • 10 Cloverfield Lane (VIA +1.9%, VIAB +1.6%) -- the secretly made spiritual sequel to J.J. Abrams' monster film Cloverfield -- grossed $25.2M to mark the best performance among new releases.
    • Deadpool (FOX, FOXA -0.3%) chugged along at No. 3 with $10.8M in its fifth week. The film's now settling in as the second-highest grossing R-rated release in worlwide numbers, and No. 3 all-time domestically.
    • Meanwhile, The Brothers Grimsby (SNE -0.1%) -- the latest from English comedian Sacha Baron Cohen -- flopped with just $3.2M in a 2,235-screen opening, good enough for the eighth-best film of the weekend.
    | Mon, Mar. 14, 3:14 PM | 19 Comments
  • Mon, Mar. 7, 1:06 PM
    • The first March weekend is coming in like a lion (and fox, bunny, sloth) for Zootopia, which ousted Deadpool (FOX +1.3%, FOXA +1.4%) from a three-week stay atop domestic box-office charts.
    • The critically popular Zootopia set a record for Disney Animation Studios (DIS +1.2%) as its biggest opening with $73.7M -- yes, bigger than Frozen ($67.4M) -- and March's fourth-biggest opening ever. The film holds a 98% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a CinemaScore (audience's exit ratings) of "A-." With an early global release, its worldwide total is up to $232.5M.
    • Deadpool fell to the No. 3 spot with $16.4M, behind another debut, London Has Fallen (CMCSA -0.6%) with $21.7M. But Deadpool built its strong domestic cumulative total to $311.1M, and $673.2M overall worldwide (No. 2 all time among R-rated films).
    • The week's other high-profile opening -- Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (VIA +5.3%, VIAB +3.5%) with Tina Fey -- drew just $7.6M to end up No. 4, in line or a little behind projections.
    | Mon, Mar. 7, 1:06 PM | 11 Comments
  • Thu, Mar. 3, 8:16 PM
    • Along with Piper Jaffray's upgrade this morning, investors in Disney (DIS +1.9%) got some extra bullishness from Credit Suisse and its analyst Omar Sheikh.
    • Any deceleration at ESPN -- very much the topic among Disney bears -- can be offset by strength in the company's other areas, along with some defensive sports-channel strategies, Sheikh argues. He's reiterated the firm's Outperform rating, with a price target of $130 (31.6% upside from today's close of $98.79).
    • Piper Jaffray had set its price target to $120.
    • While everyone accepts that ESPN growth will slow, Sheikh says: “First, DIS can reduce the likely significant usage of shared passwords for WatchESPN, where probably several million users consume the content without paying for it. Second, DIS can use its rights portfolio to create an unbundled product either with niche content aimed at "super-fans"; or for a fuller bundle of content to serve the casual sports fan."
    • Late in the morning in Chicago, during an otherwise routine annual meeting, Disney gave previews of an imposing film slate ahead, set an April 1 date to bring Star Wars: The Force Awakens to home entertainment windows, and said it was expanding its cruise line by two massive ships.
    • Previously: Disney meeting: 'Star Wars' in-home plans; cruise expansion (Mar. 03 2016)
    • Previously: On verge of meeting, Disney +1% as Piper upgrades (Mar. 03 2016)
    | Thu, Mar. 3, 8:16 PM | 19 Comments
  • Wed, Mar. 2, 1:55 PM
    • Walt Disney (DIS -0.8%) today launches its TV channels -- including ABC TV, ESPN, and Disney-branded channels as well as smaller networks including Fusion and the Longhorn Network -- on the streaming PlayStation Vue (SNE +2%) service.
    • The two had originally set the partnership in November without a launch date, and that deal followed months of negotiations where Disney's programming had been a glaring exception on the service.
    • Vue had launched last March offering some 50 channels for about $50/month, but along with the Disney launch, Sony's hoping to draw more viewers by lowering its base price for all subscribers to $40/month.
    • Sony hasn't provided viewership numbers. The Vue service is still available in just seven cities.
    • Previously: After months of dealing, Disney networks joining PlayStation Vue service (Nov. 05 2015)
    | Wed, Mar. 2, 1:55 PM | 3 Comments
  • Mon, Feb. 22, 12:41 PM
    • Deadpool (FOX +2.1%, FOXA +2.4%) again led U.S. box office easily with a solid $55M, and has become an unlikely R-rated global phenomenon, topping $490M worldwide.
    • Its nearest competitor was Kung Fu Panda 3 (DWA +4.7%, Fox distributing), which drew $12.5M to edge a solid pair of new releases. Panda has grossed $117.1M ($294.2M worldwide) in four weeks of release.
    • Fox had expected $55M in an opening weekend for Deadpool -- not its second week -- so its $150M opening was a pleasant surprise. The film has logged $235.4M domestically.
    • Sony's (SNE +1.7%) biblical drama Risen debuted to a third-best $11.8M, making it one of the biggest faith-based openings of all time (a list including The Passion of the Christ, Son of God and Heaven is for Real). Meanwhile, The Witch was the weekend's No. 4 film with $8.7M, marking the best premiere for independent label A24.
    • Star Wars watch: In its 10th week of release, The Force Awakens (DIS +1.8%) drew $3.8M to bring its all-time best domestic total to $921.6M, and its worldwide cumulative total to $2.04B.
    • Previously: 'Deadpool' smashes records for Fox with $150M holiday opening (Feb. 16 2016)
    | Mon, Feb. 22, 12:41 PM | 9 Comments
  • Thu, Feb. 18, 7:34 PM
    • Battered media stocks came in for some (valuation-based) love from Deutsche Bank, which adjusted its price targets on a number of names today, with some of them at multi-year lows to create a "selective buying opportunity."
    • It saved its only price-target hike for one of its top picks, Time Warner (TWX -0.1%). Analyst Bryan Kraft raised his target on the stock to $93, from $88; that implies 44% upside from today's close of $64.62.
    • His other top picks in the sector include Twenty-First Century Fox (FOX -0.2%, FOXA -0.3%), Buy-rated but with a price target cut to $37 from $40 (implied 40% upside for FOXA); CBS (CBS -1.7%) and Starz (STRZA -3.1%).
    • Also coming in for target cuts also were Walt Disney (DIS -0.3%), lowered to $113 from $114, implying 18.7% upside, and Viacom (VIA -0.4%, VIAB -0.4%), cut to $38 from $56, implying 6% upside on B shares.
    • It's been a rough winter for most of the stocks. Returns over the past three months: TWX -10%, FOXA -12.9%, CBS -10.8%, STRZA -37.5%, DIS -19.4%, VIAB -32.8%.
    | Thu, Feb. 18, 7:34 PM | 15 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 17, 3:51 PM
    • Paul Lee is out as president of ABC (DIS +2.9%), and Channing Dungey -- previously in charge of drama development, movies and miniseries -- is taking his place.
    • Dungey becomes the first female African-American in charge of a broadcast network. She'll report directly to Ben Sherwood, who took over last year as president of Disney/ABC TV Group, and with whom Lee was said to have clashed.
    • After a strong 2014-2015 season, ABC's ratings have disappointed in the new season, culminating in a midseason fall behind Fox to become the last-place network among the Big Four, with little rescue coming this season.
    | Wed, Feb. 17, 3:51 PM | 6 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 10, 3:58 PM
    | Wed, Feb. 10, 3:58 PM | 5 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 10, 10:42 AM
    • After marking its biggest one-day decline in six months earlier this morning (down 6.6%), Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS) is recovering, down just 3.1% after it posted record Q1 earnings that still drew eyes toward disappointing Media Networks results.
    • The earnings report drew price target cuts from a number of analysts pointing to subscriber trends. BMO Capital's gone low, cutting its target to $95 from $110, as Daniel Salmon pointed to a "notable miss" in Media Networks along with a slight miss in the company's merged consumer licensing/interactive business.
    • BTIG's Rich Greenfield noted on CNBC that while Star Wars results have been fantastic, Disney is still very much a media networks company more than a content company.
    • Guggenheim also went to the low side, trimming its fair value target to $96. Others cut targets but remaining in triple figures: FBR maintained its Outperform rating but cut its target to $101, while JPMorgan Chase (also Overweight) reduced its target to $118. Nomura trimmed its target slightly, to $110 from $115.
    • Previously: Disney call: 'Star Wars' soars; ESPN pessimism 'more dire' then deserved (Feb. 09 2016)
    • Previously: Disney now down 3.2% after 'Star Wars' pushes record quarterly earnings (Feb. 09 2016)
    | Wed, Feb. 10, 10:42 AM | 12 Comments
  • Tue, Feb. 9, 5:58 PM
    • Shares of Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS) continued declining as much as 7% in postmarket trading early in its earnings conference call, and made up a bit of ground during ESPN-related questioning -- now down 3.4%, despite upbeat talk from CEO Bob Iger: "We feel really good about how all four of our businesses are positioned."
    • Star Wars boosted Studio Entertainment (revenues up 46%; operating income up 86%), and not just the new movie, either: Classic titles in the franchise drove increased home entertainment results, and higher TV/SVOD distribution was driven by global growth.
    • Parks and Resorts increased operating income (up 22%) faster than revenue (up 9% to $4.3B), boosted by domestic parks that saw attendance growth and higher guest spending, with higher average ticket prices at parks and the cruise line. International results were affected of course by higher pre-opening costs at Shanghai, opening in June.
    • With analysts and the market seemingly focused like lasers on ESPN, Iger noted "We've actually seen an uptick in ESPN subs, which is encouraging"; notions that ESPN is cratering in any way are "ridiculous; sports is too popular" and "the predictions many have made are more dire than they should be."
    • While there were discrepancies among public comments last summer about what caused declines (cord-cutting or skinny bundles?), execs are in line now: Nielsen was telling them it was a simple loss of subs, but with corrected numbers, "we concluded that our sub loss was largely due to the fact that ESPN was not part of skinny bundles that had launched."
    • Iger's comments on TV suggested a split bet: "The expanded basic bundle will remain the dominant product for consumers for the foreseeable future," he says, while also noting that the company has brands built for over-the-top: Star Wars, Marvel and (most interestingly) ESPN. "Expect innovation and pursuit of new distribution opportunities."
    • Previously: Disney now down 3.2% after 'Star Wars' pushes record quarterly earnings (Feb. 09 2016)
    • Related: Walt Disney's (DIS) CEO Bob Iger on Q1 2016 Results - Earnings Call Transcript (Feb. 09 2016)
    | Tue, Feb. 9, 5:58 PM | 80 Comments
  • Tue, Feb. 9, 4:37 PM
    • Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS) has turned south after hours, -3.2%, after posting an all-time high in quarterly earnings, easily beating expectations with a little help from a space opera. Revenues jumped 14% Y/Y.
    • Earnings of $2.9B were a record and up nearly 32% from the prior year.
    • Studio Entertainment and Consumer Products & Interactive Media both reported record operating income, up 86% and 23% respectively, credited to success from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Parks & Resorts grew operating income 22%, while it fell 6% at Media Networks.
    • Revenue by segment: Media Networks, $6.33B (up 8%); Parks & Resorts, $4.28B (up 9%); Studio Entertainment, $2.72B (up 46%); Consumer Products & Interactive Media, $1.91B (up 8%).
    • The company pointed to timing of the College Football Playoff -- games moved to the New Year's holiday and ratings sank -- for the hit to Media Networks. But: "We've actually seen an uptick recently in ESPN subs," CEO Bob Iger tells CNBC.
    • Conference call to come at 5 p.m. ET.
    • Press Release
    | Tue, Feb. 9, 4:37 PM | 90 Comments
  • Tue, Feb. 9, 4:22 PM
    • Walt Disney  (NYSE:DIS): FQ1 EPS of $1.63 beats by $0.18.
    • Revenue of $15.24B (+13.8% Y/Y) beats by $490M.
    • Shares +2.8%.
    • Press Release
    | Tue, Feb. 9, 4:22 PM | 71 Comments
  • Mon, Feb. 8, 3:06 PM
    • With millions of viewers taking in the de facto national holiday of the Super Bowl, box office receipts slipped 8% Y/Y and those who did get out had little to excite them aside from a fighting panda and the Coen Bros.
    • Total box office was $93.5M, compared to an American Sniper-boosted $101.8M last year. Kung Fu Panda 3 (DWA -1.9%, Fox distributing) led easily for the second week in a row, drawing $21M to bring its total to $69M. Meanwhile, the Coen Brothers' Hail, Caesar! (CMCSA -0.9%) performed as expected (lightly) with $11.4M to fall into No. 2.
    • The Revenant (FOX -2.8%, FOXA -3%) with $7.1M, again edged Star Wars: The Force Awakens (DIS -3.9%) and its $6.9M for third place. New films The Choice (LGF +0.3%) and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies disappointed with $6.1M and $5.2M respectively.
    • In Star Wars marks, the film crested $900M domestically to add to its best-ever total, and crossed the $2B global-gross milestone over the weekend, getting it closer -- but not too close -- to Titanic's $2.19B.
    • With a $178M gap to cross, it may take a long engagement for Star Wars to surpass Titanic's global numbers, and it's unlikely to catch Avatar ($2.78B) for the all-time global crown. Disney reports earnings tomorrow.
    | Mon, Feb. 8, 3:06 PM | 6 Comments
  • Wed, Feb. 3, 12:05 PM
    • In a multiyear partnership, ESPN (DIS +1%) and Chinese Internet leader Tencent Holdings (OTCPK:TCEHY -2%) will pair to offer games and commentary in Mandarin.
    • Financial terms weren't disclosed. Tencent's sports site, QQ, will get live streams of the NCAA men's basketball tournament (March Madness) along with 100 other college basketball games, the X Games, and ESPN analysis for the NBA playoffs and soccer matches starting in April.
    • Most NBA viewing in China happens on computers or mobile devices via the Internet. The deal's an example of Disney's country-by-country approach to expanding ESPN and Disney content; traditional pay TV is still the focus in the U.S., while online distribution is taking the lead in other markets.
    | Wed, Feb. 3, 12:05 PM | 21 Comments
Company Description
Disney Interactive Media Group (DIMG), the interactive entertainment affiliate of The Walt Disney Company, creates immersive, connected, interactive experiences across console, online, mobile and social network platforms to entertain and inform audiences
Sector: Services
Industry: Entertainment - Diversified
Country: United States