Disney Braces For Horror Q2 Report
Disney, which is scheduled to release its earnings report 6.30am AEST, is bracing for the worst, given that its theme parks, hotels and cruise liners across the globe have been shut by the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, Disney’s movie studios have had to cease production, which will delay their release schedule and stem the flow of box office income. It is expected that Disney’s poor performance will have flow-on impacts for Wall Street, too.
Economic analysts have forecast Disney’s Q2 FY2020 earnings per share to fall by 45% year-on-year. “It’s clear that Disney sits at the centre of the storm for COVID, whether we’re talking parks or studio and the impact on people visiting movie theatres to a knock-on effect or a recession and what that will stimulate for cord cutting,” Bernstein Research analyst Mike Morton told local media.
Although it only makes up a small proportion of the company’s income, Disney+ will be buoying revenue streams somewhat.
In early April Disney+ passed the 50-million-paid-subscriber milestone, after launching in the US just five months earlier. “We’re truly humbled that Disney+ is resonating with millions around the globe, and believe this bodes well for our continued expansion throughout Western Europe and into Japan and all of Latin America later this year,” Kevin Mayer, Chairman of Walt Disney Direct-to-Consumer & International, said at the time.
Disney+ has also found a strong footing in Australia, signing up 1.8 million subscribers in its first three months of operation.
Despite the dire short-term outlook, Disney is widely expected to recover once the worst of the COVID-19 crisis passes and restrictions ease. MoffettNathanson analyst Michael Nathanson told NY Post: “The core issue for Disney is not that their future isn’t well protected, it is that the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic is incredibly harmful to their near and mid-term financials.”
Nathanson also added that the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 crisis could mean a longer-than-expected impact on Disney’s operations.