Disney catches up with Netflix thanks to streaming services | Free press

Disney’s streaming service has grown significantly in the last quarter. Netflix, on the other hand, has lost users recently, so both of them now have the same number of user accounts.

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Entertainment giant Walt Disney saw rapid growth with its streaming services in the last fiscal quarter. Disney +, Hulu and ESPN + on-demand services totaled 221 million subscriptions at the end of June, the group announced on Wednesday after the US stock market closed. Disney thus caught up with the previous market leader Netflix, which recently lost customers and also ended the previous quarter with 221 million user accounts. “We had an excellent quarter,” said Disney CEO Bob Chapek.

Disney + and ESPN + in particular grew, with annual growth rates of 31 percent and 53 percent respectively, reaching a good 152 million and nearly 23 million subscribers, respectively. Disney’s third streaming service, Hulu, grew its subscriptions by 8 percent to 46 million users. The Disney + streaming service, which only launched in November 2019 as a Netflix hunter, gained 14.4 million customers in three months – much more than experts expected. Two big hits from the series “Star Wars” “Obi-Wan Kenobi” and Marvel “Ms. Marvel “.

Disney immediately took advantage of the strong demand to push for strong price increases. For example, on December 8, the price of a standard Disney + subscription without ads for US customers will increase by $ 3 to $ 10.99 per month. However, like Netflix, Disney is looking to introduce a cheaper version with ad breaks. This offer is said to cost $ 7.99 per month – the same as an ad-free subscription. For Hulu, the price increases by $ 1 to $ 2 per month, depending on the subscription model. ESPN + also recently announced a price hike in the US.

Also financially, things were going well for the entertainment empire, which also includes the classic cable division as well as movie studios, theme parks, resorts, and cruise ships. Sales rose 26 percent year-on-year to $ 21.5 billion. Profit rose 53 percent to $ 1.4 billion (€ 1.36 billion).

Quarterly data significantly exceeded analysts’ expectations. Shares reacted after hours with a price increase of over 4%. Disney has had a tough time on Wall Street recently, with share down 28 percent from the start of the year. (dpa)

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