Good morning, Disney shareholders. Emphasis on the “good.” As the U.S. stock markets woke up on Friday, shares of The Walt Disney Company (DIS) opened around $170 per share, setting a new all-time high.
Disney’s market cap, which as the markets opened flirted with numbers as high as $309 billion, is now more than $300 billion for the first time ever. For a comparison you’re probably wondering about, Netflix’s market cap is about $219 billion.
Market capitalization is the total dollar value of a company’s outstanding shares of stock in the market.
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So yes, Wall Street was pretty impressed by the company’s streaming-subscriber updates — and all of those other many, many announcements — and no one seems all that concerned about increasing prices.
Disney’s stock price closed Thursday at 4 p.m. ET at $154.69 per share. It is now up double digits on a percentage basis from that.
The stock first popped after-hours and very early on into the company’s four-plus-hour Investor Day 2020, when the Disney+ subscriber count was announced. Momentum continued throughout the evening and into this morning.
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The valuation is certainly soaring — but so is the spending.
Disney+ spent about $2 billion on content in 2020, according to CFO Christine M. McCarthy. The company now forecasts that content spend to grow to between “$8 and $9 billion” in 2024, she said — especially with the inclusion of the streaming service’s sixth brand, Star, which will have a giant international presence.
The previous guidance for that year’s content-spend was about half of the new high end.
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Disney+, which launched in November 2019, expects to hit peak losses next year and be profitable in fiscal 2024, the company’s chief financial officer said.
As of Dec. 2, Disney+ had 86.8 million subscribers. The company expects that number to skyrocket to a global paid total of 230-260 million by the end of fiscal 2024.
That made everyone seem to forget about that whole our-parks-are-mostly-closed-due-to-coronavirus thing, just as the Bobs — CEO Chapek and Chairman Iger (pictured above) — planned.