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Disney (DIS) Posts 29% Rise in Q2 Profit as ESPN Continues to Dominate

May 8, 2012 5:19 PM EDT Send to a Friend
Disney (NYSE: DIS) issued second-quarter results Tuesday afternoon. The stock is up about 1 percent in the post-market session.

Net revenue rose 6 percent from $9.077 billion during the second-quarter of 2011 to $9.629 billion. Analysts were looking for quarterly sales of $9.56 billion.

Sales to the Media Networks segment rose 9 percent to $4.69 billion, sales to the Parks and Resorts segment were up 10 percent to $2.9 billion, and sales fell 12 percent to $1.18 billion in the company's Studio Entertainment unit. Strength in the Cable Networks was attributed to growth at ESPN and, to a lesser extent, at the domestic Disney Channels. The increase at ESPN was driven by higher affiliate and advertising revenue partially offset by higher programming and production costs. Additionally, results to the Parks and Resorts unit were driven by increases at our domestic parks and resorts, Tokyo Disney Resort and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, partially offset by a decrease at Disneyland Paris.

Disney reported a 21 percent surge in net income from $942 million in the year-ago quarter to $1.14 billion. Diluted earnings were 63 cents per share, up 29 percent. Excluding restructuring and impairment charges, profit totaled 58 cents per share, better than the Street estimate of 55 cents per share.

Free cash flow tumbled 75 percent from $1.32 billion in the same period last year to just $335 million.

Disney's Bob Iger said, "With 18% adjusted growth in earnings per share, we’re pleased with our second quarter performance. We’re incredibly optimistic about our future, given the strength of our core brands, Disney, Pixar, Marvel, ESPN, and ABC, and our extraordinary ability to grow franchises across our businesses, such as The Avengers, which shattered domestic box office records with a $207.1 million opening weekend for a global performance of more than $702 million to date."




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