Profits Fall At Disney

Published by: Mike Goldman on 12th Nov 2010 | View all blogs by Mike Goldman
Disney Logo.jpg
Profits Fall At Disney

Walt Disney Co. reported late Thursday that its fiscal 2010 fourth-quarter profit declined 7 percent, largely due to decreased earnings at its ESPN cable sports channel and its amusement parks.  The company reported earnings for the quarter of $835 million, or 43 cents per share, compared with earnings of $895 million, 47 cents per share, in the same period of 2009 and analysts' estimates of 46 cents per share.

Earning for the media giant took a slight hit during the period from structuring cand impairment charges totaling $58 million, or 2 cents per share.  Disney revenue fell 1 percent in the period to $9.74 billion, falling just shy of analysts' projections of $9.95 billion.  Profits among the firm's cable and broadcast television networks fell 18 percent to $1.21 billion.  The large loss is partially due to $524 ESPN received a year ago in previously deferred revenue, and ESPN had an extra week of revenue in the year ago period.

ESPN's advertising revenue did, however, climb 15 percent in the period thanks to increased business from automotive, telecommunications, and financial businesses.  Disney officials have remained relatively quiet about negotiations to make their content available to users of the new Google TV internet video service.  ESPN and Fox TV are the only major networks who have not signed agreements with the internet search giant. 

Disney's earnings at its amusement parks and resorts declined 8 percent to $316 million on increased costs and decreased participation in the Disney Vacation Club.  The firm's studio branch, meanwhile, bounced back from a year ago loss to post a $104 million profit, largely thanks to the impressive box-office performance of “Toy Story 3.”

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