Oct. 5, 2014, 8:55 PM
- The NBA is expected to make an announcement tomorrow that it will renew TV rights deals worth close to $2B with ESPN (NYSE:DIS) and TNT (NYSE:TWX).
- The development would end speculation that NBC Sports, Fox Sports, or an online TV player would win the coveted packages to replace the current contracts which expire in 2016.
- Variety reports the NBA contract is the last major sports league deal that ESPN will have to negotiate over the next several years.
Oct. 2, 2014, 2:07 PM
- Bob Iger, previously set to retire in June 2016, will remain Disney's (DIS -1.1%) chairman/CEO for two years longer, under the terms of a contract extension.
- The extension "maintains the same annual compensation terms" as Iger's existing deal, but includes "the opportunity to earn a performance-based retention bonus if certain financial performance goals are met over a five-year period ending with fiscal year 2018." Details will be provided in an 8-K tomorrow.
- As it is, there had been speculation Iger, 63, would stay on board beyond 2016.
Oct. 2, 2014, 9:28 AM
- A survey of consumers by RBC Capital Markets indicates viewership of network TV websites has fallen.
- YouTube, Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) scored a higher percentage of viewers from a year ago - while NBC (NASDAQ:CMCSA), ABC (NYSE:DIS), CBS (NYSE:CBS), and Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) were all in decline over the period.
- HBO Go (NYSE:TWX) saw its percentage of users rise to 10% from 6%, while Hulu fell back.
- Secular TV ratings have also been in decline for networks.
Oct. 1, 2014, 9:55 AM
- Theme park stocks slide lower than market averages after a single case of Ebola in Dallas creates a talking point.
- Plenty of traders think the dip is providing a good entry point for names in the group off what they consider undue anxiety.
- Decliners: Disney (NYSE:DIS) -1.1%, Cedar Fair (NYSE:FUN) -0.6%, Six Flags (NYSE:SIX) -0.8%, SeaWorld (NYSE:SEAS) -1.1%.
Sep. 30, 2014, 11:17 PM| Sep. 30, 2014, 11:17 PM | Comment!
Sep. 30, 2014, 1:17 PM
- The long-established window for feature films established between Hollywood studios and theater exhibitors will crack in a major fashion next summer when Netflix (NFLX +1.1%) and IMAX (IMAX +0.7%) jointly release a film online and through the large-screen IMAX format.
- Though media analysts think theater chains will continue to bristle over the game-changing initiative - and for now IMAX says it will let exhibitors control the films that run on IMAX screens - IMAX sits in a powerful position in the future if it wants to play hardball.
- "Netflix already changed the TV business in a very, very significant way. The movie business is teed up next," says BTIG's Rich Greenfield on the development.
- Netflix and Weinstein are collaborating on a number of projects, several of which could turn into straight-to-streaming feature films.
- What to watch: Hollywood studios (LGF, SNE, VIA, CMCSA, DIS) could be the ones to have the final say on if the feature film window model is adjusted.
Sep. 30, 2014, 9:19 AM
- The FCC is considering new regulations for companies looking to offer an over-the-top online video service, according to The Wall Street Journal.
- Rules governing OTT services could make it harder for content providers and distributors to carve out smaller deals for programming.
- Traditional streamers such as Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), Hulu (DIS, CMCSA, FOXA), and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) that offer their content on-demand should be outside the regulatory purview of the FCC on the OTT startups.
- Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH), Sony (NYSE:SNE), and Verizon (NYSE:VZ) are the furthest along in the race for a trimmed-down online video package aimed largely at cord-cutters and cord-nevers.
Sep. 30, 2014, 8:07 AM
- Cowen Research says the trend of sluggish TV ratings has continued through Q3.
- The investment firm estimates broadcast viewers in the key 18-49 year old demographic fell 8% Y/Y (ex. Thursday night football) last week on a live+3 reading.
- There's growing concern in the sector that more advertising dollars will float to digital channels due to the ratings slump.
- Related stocks: CBS, CMCSA, DIS, FOXA, AMCX, VIA, SNI, CRWN, MSG.
Sep. 24, 2014, 11:21 AM| Sep. 24, 2014, 11:21 AM | 5 Comments
Sep. 23, 2014, 1:52 PM
- Jakks Pacific (JAKK -0.3%) could rake in $125M this year from sales of Disney princess dolls based on the movie Frozen, according to Ascendiant Capital Markets.
- The company has added five factories in China to its production assets in order to make sure demand is met.
- Frozen dolls from Jakks are included on lists for the top holiday toys from both Toys R Us and Wal-Mart.
- Disney (DIS -0.8%) gets a cut of the doll action through its consumer products segment.
Sep. 22, 2014, 2:43 PM
- Hulu (DIS, CMCSA, FOXA) announces via its corporate blog that it will develop an original series based on a Stephen King book in partnership with Bad Robot.
- The direct-to-series approach by Hulu for King's 11/22/63 stands in contrast to the norm from Amazon Prime Instant and Netflix.
- Media watchers give 11/22/63 a fair chance to create a buzz for the online subscription service.
Sep. 19, 2014, 12:16 PM
- A study sponsored by A+E maintains that TV viewers aren't perturbed by a disabled fast-forward option when watching shows on video-on-demand.
- The interesting conclusion comes right as major TV networks (DIS, CMCSA, CBS, FOXA, TWX, AMCX, VIA, SNI, MSG, CRWN) are looking to push Live+7 ratings in order to grab more advertising eyeballs.
- The switch to Live+7 and disabled VOD fast-forwarding is seen as a revenue-saver for the sector with traditional TV viewing in decline.
Sep. 17, 2014, 1:35 PM
Sep. 15, 2014, 1:26 PM
- Disney Infinity (NYSE:DIS) hired four unknown video game enthusiasts to design intricate levels for the Toy Box gaming mode of the new version of Disney Infinity.
- The new staffers were identified through open design competitions.
- What to watch: After Disney Infinity 1.0 raked in over $500M in retail sales, the company is looking for an bigger haul from Infinity 2.0 which features Marvel superhero characters. Stepping up to more intriguing levels (think Minecraft) is part of the plan to get more buzz for the gaming system.
Sep. 12, 2014, 3:45 PM
- Disney (DIS -0.5%) plans to bring a Frozen attraction to its Epcot park.
- Frozen characters will also make an appearance at the Magic Kingdom park in a variety of ways and are anticipated to end up at Disney parks across the world.
- The global box office total for Frozen ended up at $400.39M of which over two-thirds was outside the U.S.
Sep. 12, 2014, 11:14 AM
- The state of Nevada slashed a tax credit pilot program aimed at bringing film and TV production to the state in order to free up money to lure Tesla Motors and its gigafactory with $1.3B in tax breaks.
- The development could slightly pinch the bottom of line of Hollywood studios (LGF, SNE, VIA, CMCSA, DIS) that were looking to use the Nevada tax breaks to gain leverage in California.
DIS vs. ETF Alternatives
Walt Disney Co, together with its subsidiaries, is a diversified entertainment company with operations in five business segments: Media Networks, Parks and Resorts, Studio Entertainment, Consumer Products and Interactive.
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