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The Walt Disney Company (DIS)

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  • Oct. 14, 2012, 6:10 AM
    Providence Equity Partners has reportedly sold its 10% holding in Hulu back to the online video service for $200M in a transaction that values the company at $2B. Hulu is taking a loan to fund the acquisition, which leaves News Corp. (NWS), Comcast (CMCSA) and Disney (DIS) as the remaining owners. Separately, Hulu's CEO is poised to receive $40M.
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  • Oct. 12, 2012, 6:49 AM
    Cumulus Media (CMLS) announces it will replace sports programming from ESPN (DIS) with CBS Sports Radio in 47 markets. The move will narrow the gap in total audience between the two sports radio networks.
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  • Oct. 11, 2012, 10:25 AM
    Barclays Capital analyst Anthony DiClemente cuts his estimate for U.S. advertising growth due to a "choppy" economy to 4% for 2012 and 1.9% for 2013 from 4.6% and 2.3%, respectively. TV advertising felt a negative effect from the Olympics, but is due for a bounce with political ads ramping up through the November elections. His big picture view of the media sector is still positive on decent growth expectations as he backs News Corp. (NWS, NWS) as his top pick.
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  • Oct. 11, 2012, 4:49 AM
    Stan Lee Media sues Disney (DIS) for "billions of dollars," saying it holds the rights to Marvel superheroes such as Spider-Man that have reaped huge movie returns for Disney. Stan Lee Media says that Stan Lee, who created many of Marvel's characters, assigned the company his rights to the heroes in 1998, a month before he gave those same rights to Marvel. Lee is no longer associated with the firm that bears his name.
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  • Oct. 10, 2012, 10:49 AM
    A new book from author David Denby makes the case that serious film dramas may be a thing of the past as studios increasingly stick to a formula of producing comic book and animated hits on top of the typical cycle of genre films. Younger audiences also have an outsized influence on what films are greenlighted with their stronger voice on social media channels. Profits over awards: TWX, DIS, NWS, LGF, DWA.
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  • Oct. 8, 2012, 12:19 PM
    Disney (DIS -1.5%) ticks lower after Caris downgrades the media giant to Average, citing valuation. Disney, which now trades at 17x estimated 2012 EPS, closed near its 52-week high on Friday.
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  • Oct. 4, 2012, 10:27 AM
    Cablevision (CVC +1.7%) strikes a content deal with Disney (DIS +0.7%) that will see the media giant's content become available across various platforms and devices for Cablevision customers. Included in the agreement are ESPN3 and ESPN 3D, which seems to tips the scale even closer to live sports programming becoming more widely available to sports fans on smartphones and tablets.
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  • Oct. 2, 2012, 7:38 AM
    Disney (DIS) unveils a new home page for its website that it says marks a dramatic shift from the legacy site. Instead of serving as a marketing machine, Disney.com will now be chock full of digital and entertainment options with interactive features. The move could also signal a subtle shift away from the firm's reliance on YouTube and Hulu channels as it starts to add fresh content to the site.
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  • Sep. 28, 2012, 10:05 AM
    Viewing audiences are so small for 3-D TV that ratings don't even measure a blip on the Nielsen's rating system. Despite the apparent apathy of consumers, new TVs for the holiday season are embedded with the feature and cable firms continue to put 3-D channels in premium packages. Execs with Disney (DIS +0.5%) say they are just ahead of the curve and the future for 3-D is still bright, but industry watchers can't help but note that many families with 3-D TVs don't even bother to buy the glasses needed to watch the novelty service.
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  • Sep. 28, 2012, 8:04 AM
    Disney's (DIS) ESPN won't be part of a streaming service of channels planned by Dish Networks (DISH), according to reports. The distinction is important because the sports network charges amongst the highest carriage fees in the industry and is a ratings juggernaut. Dish's chances for success with its plan isn't rated uniformly high by analysts, Bernstein Research's Craig Moffett says content companies may take a pass.
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  • Sep. 24, 2012, 9:11 AM
    Hulu (DIS, CMCSA, NWS) nabs content from World Wresting Entertainment in one of it largest streaming deals to date. Starting today, subscribers will have access to popular wrestling shows only a day after they air on cable networks. The pesky Hulu continues to make its presence felt with its original programming and new content plays, leading some analysts to scratch their heads over the ultimate goal that co-owners Disney, Comcast, and News Corp. have in mind for the upstart.
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  • Sep. 21, 2012, 11:34 AM
    Disney (DIS +1%) won't sell short the idea that its Avengers property will drive revenue through a wide variety of channels. While holiday season merchandising is a no-brainer, the company also sees sales from social games, animated/live action series, and sequels galore derived the Avengers characters. At the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference exec Jay Rasulo called it the "Disney machine" in action, and by all indications the global box office take of $1.5B for the original film is just a start for the valuable franchise.
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  • Sep. 20, 2012, 10:52 AM
    Disney (DIS -0.1%) exec Jay Rasulo notes at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference that growth engines are still alive at the company with a number of new projects expected to earn 15%-20% IRR. The company will continue to invest in theme parks, including in Avatar Land at Animal Kingdom and renovations at Magic Kingdom. Rasulo says occupancy rates and spending has improved at U.S. theme parks into September, while debt-laden Euro Disney has been given a lifeline with a new loan that could help improve results. (webcast)
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  • Sep. 19, 2012, 6:59 AM
    Amusement park operators continue to fly high with concentrated bets Six Flags (SIX) and Cedar Fair (FUN) hitting multi-year highs recently, while diversified Disney (DIS) rode its theme park results to hit an all-time high. After a few rocky years of wobbling revenue, changes in management and restructured balance sheets have helped turn the sector around.
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  • Sep. 14, 2012, 2:44 PM
    Life after DVDs: Though the market for DVDs is on life support with digital options proliferating, movie studios might not miss a beat with over 200 cable, satellite, and Internet services now offering post-theatrical movie viewing options. The next wave could see heavyweights players such as CBS, Netflix, Coinstar, Amazon, and Apple start bidding even higher to land exclusive rights to premium content or move in the other direction to invest in their own original programming
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  • Sep. 13, 2012, 1:23 PM
    Also from Disney (DIS +1%) at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Investment Conference: CFO Jay Rasulo says advertising buys didn't immediately jump back after the Olympics lull, but still sees positive trends for future quarters. He confidently notes that retailers have now learned their lesson by undervaluing the power of The Avengers with consumers and will jump in full force with merchandising for the holiday period as well as down the road with sequels. As for repurchased stock, Rasulo says buyback in FY12 should total $3B. (webcast.
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Company Description
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.