The basic numbers look pretty good — Disney says earnings hit a record high –with Parks and Resorts the star operation in the quarter that ended in June. The company reported net income of $2.0B, +22.4% vs the period last year, on revenues of $11.1B, +3.9%. Analysts expected a little more on the top line, about $11.3B. But earnings at $1.02 a share handily beat predictions of 93 cents. The television units held their own: Cable Networks revenues of $3.6B were +3% while the operating income, at $1.9B, was +1%. The company says that its kids channels had to offset a rare drop in operating income at ESPN due to higher programming costs — mostly for NBA and Major League Baseball — and deferred recognition of some affiliate fees. ABC generated $1.5B in revenue, +3%, and $268M in operating income, +7%. The income boost is partly due to lower costs which offset a modest decline in ad sales. At the theme parks, revenues were +9% to $3.4B while operating income soared 21% to $630M. The unit had easy comparisons with last year which was hurt by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The company says, though, that guest spending is up after the company raised ticket prices. Disney’s studio had a more nuanced story to tell with revenues flat at $1.6B, but operating income up $264M to $313M. It did well with The Avengers and Brave, as well as sales of TV shows overseas — but was hurt by declining home video sales. Meanwhile, consumer products revenues were +8% to $742M with operating income +35% to $209M helped by improved sales of licensed merchandise in Japan. The overall results “clearly demonstrate Disney’s unique value proposition and great potential to deliver long-term growth, CEO Bob Iger says.
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