Disney off to strong start

Hannah Montana and High School Musical star for Disney in its first quarter results.
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Disney’s total revenue for the first quarter of 2008 reached $10.45 billion, a nine per cent increase on the first quarter of 2007.

The quarter, which ended on December 29th 2007, also saw the entertainment giant increase its total operating income by 15 per cent to $2.25 billion.

However, the firm’s net income dipped to $1.25 billion from $1.7 billion a year earlier.

Consumer products’ revenue rose by 29 per cent to $870 million and its operating income increased 38 per cent to $322 million. The firm says the growth is particularly due to the strong performances of Hannah Montana and High School Musical merchandise.

As forecasted by analysts Disney’s Media Networks performed strongly, with revenue up by ten per cent to $908 million. Operating income at Cable Networks increased by $125 million to $586 million, while operating income for Broadcasting rose 30 per cent to $322 million. The firm attributed growth at its domestic channels to strong DVD sales of High School Musical 2 and higher revenue.

However, the Studio Entertainment division’s performance was weaker, with operating income for the quarter down by 15 per cent to $514 million. The firm described revenues as “flat at $2.6 billion”.

Parks and Resorts revenues benefited from an increase of 11 per cent to $2.8 billion while operating income improved by 25 per cent to 505 million.

Robert Iger president and CEO said: “We’ve started off 2008 with another outstanding quarter, marked by strong creative and operational performances. These results once again highlight the quality of our content and our unique ability to leverage it across our many businesses and territories.”

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