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Walt Disney Co. Boosts Dividend

Walt Disney Co. said Wednesday that it was raising its annual dividend by 25 percent to 75 cents a share following a successful year for the company. The Burbank media and entertainment giant will pay the dividend on Dec. 28 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 10. Last year, the company paid a dividend of 60 cents in January. Chairman and Chief Executive Robert Iger said the dividend payment follows a year that was a creative and financial success. The company’s fiscal year ended Sept. 29. In addition, he cited Disney’s acquisition last month of Lucasfilm Ltd., the San Francisco production company behind the “Star Wars” film franchise. Disney plans to make additional films for the series. “The addition of Lucasfilm will further fuel Disney’s creative engine across our company to create additional value for our shareholders,” said Iger, in a prepared statement. “We’re confident the company is well positioned to continue our strong performance and growth.” Last year, Disney’s earned almost $5.7 billion ($3.13 a share) on revenue of about $42.3 million. Both its profit and sales hit records, largely due to improved attendance at theme parks, the strength of its cruise business and continued growth at its ESPN cable sports network. Shares closed up 60 cents, or more than 1 percent, to $49.20 on the New York Stock Exchange.

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