August 12, 2021
The Walt Disney Co. Aug. 12 reported that its branded Disney+ subscription streaming VOD service ended the third quarter (ended July 3) with 116 million subscribers — up from 57.5 million subs in the previous-year period.
Disney CEO Bob Chapek attributed the subscriber growth to launches of Pixar Animation’s Luca, and original series “Loki” and “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” among other programming, in core Disney+ markets.
When combined with ESPN+, Hulu and Hulu+Live TV, Disney ended the period with almost 174 million subs. Specifically, ESPN+ finished the quarter with 14.9 million subs, up from 8.5 million last year. Hulu increased its sub base to 39.1 million from 32.1 million. Online TV platform Hulu with Live TV topped 3.7 million subs from 3.4 million last year.
“We ended the third quarter in a strong position, and are pleased with the company’s trajectory as we grow our businesses amidst the ongoing challenges of the pandemic,” Chapek said in a statement.
Disney on Nov. 11 will bow “Disney+ Day” to celebrate the two-year anniversary launch of the SVOD platform. The event will coincide with new product announcements and a company-wide cross-promotional campaign.
Disney is launching Disney+ Hotstar in Malaysia and Thailand in this quarter. The platform is currently operating in limited capacity in Japan and will switch to full operation in late October. Other launches in South Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong.
As previously disclosed, the launch of Disney+ in Eastern Europe has been delayed to the summer of 2022 primarily to allow for an extended footprint, that includes parts of the Middle East and South Africa.
“We’re excited about the launch of Star+ [featuring more adult-themed FX content] in Latin America later this month,” Chapek said. “The direct-to-consumer business remains our top priority.”