Buoyed by growth at its media networks and stellar attendance at its theme parks, the Walt Disney Co. surpassed analysts’ estimates by six cents, as its net income increased 5 percent to $723 million, or 35 cents per share, up from $688 million or 33 cents share, in the comparable period last year. Disney’s quarterly revenue rose to $8.6 billion, up from $8.5 billion in the comparable period in 2003. Disney’s media networks revenue increased 11 percent to $3.5 billion, and segment-operating income increased 36 percent to $467 million. Political advertising revenue and ad revenue from football games aired on ABC helped Disney to turn a profit, as well as a notable increase in parks and resorts revenue, which spiked 30 percent to $2.1 billion. Disney’s first quarter results were also marked by a studio entertainment revenue drop of 20 percent to $2.4 billion, attributed to lower DVD sales. Disney’s numbers for the quarter included an impairment charge of $17 million or $11 million after tax, for the sale of the Disney Store North America to The Children’s Place Retail Stores Inc. for $100 million. Earnings per share for the quarter included a $24 million benefit from the resolution of certain income tax matters.
Disney Earnings Beat Estimates