Disney CEO Bob Chapek said Tuesday the company’s fast-growing streaming service Disney+ has topped 100 million subscribers.
He made the reveal at Disney’s annual shareholders meeting, held virtually this year. The company last reported Feb. 11 that Disney+ had 94.9 million subscribers.
“The enormous success of Disney+… has inspired us to be even more ambitious, and to significantly increase our investment in the development of high-quality content,” Chapek said.
“In fact, we set a target of 100+ new titles per year, and this includes Disney Animation, Disney Live Action, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. Our direct-to-consumer business is the company’s top priority, and our robust pipeline of content will continue to fuel its growth.”
Disney’s investor day on Dec. 10 featured over 100 new products with many heading to Disney_ but also a solid endorsement by Chapek of the importance of theatrical releases. Executives anticipated then that streaming service will have 230 million to 260 million subscribers by 2024.
Disney+ launched in the U.S. on November 12, 2019, and has rolled out rapidly across Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, Latin America, and most recently, Singapore.
The shareholder meeting is usually a big event and often a family affair given the brand love and the fact that the stock widely held by retail investors. The year since the last event — held live in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina — has been one of the most transformative, eventful and triumphant years in the company’s history in no small part due to the rapid growth at Disney+ which surpassed all expectations. It leads in new streaming services that have continued to roll out, most recently Paramount+ and Discovery+.
The streamer helped keep the stock buoyant after an initial as Covid-19 lockdowns that closed theme parks, stalled production and shuttered movie theaters. The shares surged as Wall Street applauded the deft digital pivot. Enthusiasm is currently bubbling on reopening hopes with vaccines rolling out briskly and large swathes of the economy back in action, which will help the company’s traditional businesses.
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