Marvel acquisition, Alice In Wonderland boost Disney’s profits; earnings up 55%

MUMBAI: In its second quarter results, The Walt Disney Company’s operating income of its movie studio was up to $223 million from $13 million in the year-ago.

Disney’s release Alice In Wonderland took box office collections of almost $1 billion, which has pulled up the studio’s performance. Additionally, Marvel Entertainment’s acquisition has also helped the company in posting strong quarter results in which earnings were up 55 per cent.

For the three months ended 3 April, Disney had net income of $953 million, a 55 percent rise from $613 million a year earlier. Revenue rose six per cent to $8.6 billion. Studio Entertainment revenues for the quarter increased 7 per cent to $1.5 billion and segment operating income increased $210 million to $223 million. Higher operating income was primarily due to an increase in worldwide theatrical distribution.

The increase in worldwide theatrical distribution was primarily due to the strong performance of Alice in Wonderland in the current quarter, compared to Confessions of a Shopaholic and Race to Witch Mountain in the prior-year quarter, and lower distribution expense for future releases in the domestic market.

“The incredible box office performance of Disney’s Alice in Wonderland and acquisition of Marvel, whose Iron Man 2 has grossed $334 million in global box office in its first two weeks, clearly show the benefits of investing in high quality branded content. With the economy showing signs of improvement, we’re confident our strategy is the right one to provide consumers the best in entertainment while building long-term value for our shareholders,” said Walt Disney president and CEO Robert A. Iger.

The current quarter included restructuring and impairment charges, a gain on the sale of an investment in a pay television service in Central Europe, and an accounting gain related to the acquisition of the Disney Stores in Japan, which collectively had no net impact on earnings per share (EPS). The prior-year quarter included restructuring and impairment charges, which had a $0.10 per share impact on EPS.

However, as compared to the performance of the movie business, Disney’s television operation had flat income of $1.3 billion with a 6 per cent increase in revenue.

Disney’s consumer products division, where income soared 37 percent to $133 million, contributed to the strong overall results.

On the other hand, Disney’s theme park division reported a 12 per cent decline in income to $150 million, whereas revenues were up by two per cent.

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