Walt Disney Co. reports better-than-expected quarterly profit, thanks to huge success of...

Walt Disney Co. reports better-than-expected quarterly profit, thanks to huge success of Black Panther


Walt Disney Co. (DIS) announced its second-quarter profit that surpassed analysts’ average estimates, thanks to theme parks and film studio segments that make up for weakness in television business.

The Burbank, California-based media conglomerate posted adjusted profit of $1.84 a share for the three-month period ended March, up from $1.70 a share estimated by analysts. Its theme park business generated net income of $954 million, up 27 percent from the comparable quarter last year amid surge in attendance and guest spending.

Earnings from its movie studio reached $847 million, largely driven by the success of “Black Panther,” its superhero movie that surpassed estimates with $1.3 billion in ticket sales worldwide to become the ninth-biggest grossing film in the history.

The company’s media networks segment reported net income of $2.1 billion, down 6 percent versus last year. The unit was mainly hurt by subscribers’ loss and partially due to its investment in streaming technology firm BAMTech.

Revenue for the quarter rose to $14.5 billion, beating analysts’ average estimates of $14.1 billion.

Speaking on a conference call with analysts, CEO Bob Iger said Disney would take into account expanding its park business in China and other potential markets. However, the company won’t essentially build something very soon, he elaborated.

Disney is also trying to buy majority of 21st Century Fox Inc. for nearly $52 billion. The deal is subject to regulatory approval and it may get more complicated as rival Comcast plans to buy one of Fox units for more value than Disney is offering.

If Disney-Fox deal goes through, it will help Disney pull more streaming viewers due to addition of more programming.

Disney shares fell more than 1 percent in the after-hours trading on Tuesday despite reporting better-than-expected quarterly results.