Category Archives: Entertainment

Walt Disney – Company Overview

The Walt Disney Company (Walt Disney), together with its subsidiaries, is a diversified entertainment company. The company also owns and operates the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, the Disneyland Resort in California, the Disney Vacation Club, the Disney Cruise Line and ESPN Zone facilities in several states.The company primarily operates in the US and Canada. It is headquartered in Burbank, California and employs 137,000 people as of September 29, 2007 (FY2007).

The company recorded revenues of $35,510 million during the FY2007, an increase of 5.2% over FY2006. The operating profit of the company was $7,833 million during FY2007, an increase of 43.9% over FY2006.The net profit was $4,687 million in FY2007, an increase of 38.9% over FY2006.

Walt Disney – Key Facts


Head Office

The Walt Disney Company

500 South Buena Vista Street

Burbank

California 91521

USA

Phone

1 818 560 1000

Fax

1 818 560 1930

Web Address

http://www.disney.com

Revenue / turnover (USD Mn)

35,510.0

Financial Year End

September

Employees

137,000

New York Stock Exchange Ticker

DIS

Walt Disney – Business Description

Walt Disney is a US-based company. It owns media networks as well as parks and resorts. It also makes movies and markets consumer products. The company has operations in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Latin America.

The company’s business is divided into four business segments: media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, and consumer products.

The media networks segment owns television, radio and cable properties in the US and other countries. This segment includes domestic broadcast television network, television production and distribution operations, domestic television stations, cable/satellite networks, domestic broadcast radio networks and stations, and internet and mobile operations.

Domestic broadcast television network comprises the ABC Television Network.This network has 231 affiliated stations operating under agreements and reaches 99% of all US television households. The ABC Television Network derives substantially all of its revenues from the sale to advertisers of time in network programs for commercial announcements.

Through the operations of the television production and distribution sub segment, the media networks division develops and produces television programming for distribution to global broadcasters and cable and satellite operators, including major television networks, Disney Channel and other cable and satellite networks, under the Buena Vista Television, Buena Vista Productions, Touchstone Television and Walt Disney Television labels. The company’s program development is focused on the development, production and distribution of half-hour comedies and one-hour dramas for network primetime broadcast.

The operations of domestic television stations include nine very high frequency (VHF) television stations, six of which are located in the top ten markets in the US and one ultra high frequency (UHF) television station. All of the company’s television stations are affiliated with the ABC Television Network and transmit both analog and digital signals. Collectively, these stations reach 24% of television households in the US.

The company’s cable/satellite networks are engaged in broadcasting of television programming, licensing of television programming to domestic and international markets and investing in foreign television broadcasting, programming, production and distribution entities.The primary cable/satellite programming services of the company include ESPN, the Disney Channel, Toon Disney, SOAPnet, ABC Family, JETIX, A&E Television Network, Lifetime Entertainment Services and E! Entertainment Television.

The company has various other international investments in broadcast and cable properties, such as ESPN, Disney Channel, International Disney Channels, Toon Disney, The History Channel, Lifetime Real Women and Jetix Latin America. The Internet and mobile operations of the Media

Networks segment develop, publish and distribute content for online and wireless services. Internet Websites and products include ABC.com, ABCNews.com, Disney.com, Disney Online, ABCFamily.com, SOAPnet.com, ESPN.com, Disney’s Club Penguin and Disney Mobile Studios. In June 2007, the spun-off of its wholly owned subsidiary, ABC Radio Holdings, which was then merged into a subsidiary of Citadel Broadcasting Corporation.

The internet and mobile operations of the media networks segment develop, publish and distribute content for online and wireless services. Internet websites and products include ABC.com, ABCNEWS.com, Disney.com, ESPN.com and Enhanced TV.The company’s internet operations derive revenues from a combination of advertising and sponsorships, subscription services and e-commerce. Disney Online also offers broadband services, including Disney Connection and Disney’s Toontown Online, and Disney Mobile Studios produces and publishes mobile content which is distributed through mobile carriers and content distributors worldwide. The company also offers Disney Mobile, a mobile phone service for parents and children, and Mobile ESPN, a national US wireless phone service.

Through the parks and resorts segment, the company owns and operates the Walt Disney World Resort and Disney Cruise Line in Florida, the Disneyland Resort in California and ESPN Zone facilities in several states.The company manages and owns a stake of 51% and 43%, respectively, in the Disneyland Resort Paris in France and Hong Kong Disneyland. The company also licenses the operations of the Tokyo Disney Resort in Japan. The company’s Walt Disney Imagineering unit designs and develops new theme park concepts and attractions as well as resort properties.

The studio entertainment segment produces and acquires live-action and animated motion pictures, animated direct-to-video programming, musical recordings and live stage plays. The company distributes produced and acquired films (including its film and television library) in the theatrical, home entertainment and television markets.

In theatrical market, the company’s subsidiary Walt Disney Pictures and Television produces and acquires live-action motion pictures that are distributed primarily under the Walt Disney Pictures and Touchstone Pictures banners. Another subsidiary, Miramax Film, acquires and produces motion pictures that are distributed under the Miramax banner.The company also produces and distributes animated motion pictures under the banner Walt Disney Pictures, and co-finances and distributes animated motion pictures developed in conjunction with Pixar. In 2006, the company acquired Pixar in an all-stock transaction and converted into a wholly owned subsidiary. Now the company produces feature animation films under both the Disney and Pixar banners.

In the home entertainment market, the company distributes home entertainment releases under each of its motion picture banners. In the international market, the company distributes home entertainment releases under each of its motion picture banners both directly and through independent foreign distribution companies. In addition, the company develops, acquires and produces original programming for direct-to-video release.

In the television market, the company distributes its television releases under each of its motion picture banners in the pay per view, pay television, free television, pay television 2, and international television sub categories. The company’s Disney Music Group includes Walt Disney Records, Hollywood Records (including the Mammoth Records and Buena Vista Records labels), Lyric Street Records, Buena Vista Concerts and Disney Music Publishing. Its Disney Theatrical Group includes both Disney Theatrical Productions and Disney Live Family Entertainment. It also includes Pixer, which produces feature animation films under both the Disney and Pixar banners

The consumer products segment partners with licensees, manufacturers, publishers and retailers to design, promote and sell products based on existing and new Disney characters and other intellectual property. In addition to leveraging the company’s film and television properties, the consumer products segment develops new intellectual property within its publishing and interactive gaming divisions.This segment includes character merchandising and publications licensing, books and magazines, Disney Interactive Studios (Formerly Buena Vista Games), DisneyShopping.com and The Disney Store.

As part of the character merchandising and distribution licensing sub segment, the company’s worldwide merchandise licensing operations are divided among four lines of business: Disney Hardlines, which includes product categories such as consumer electronics, stationery, food and personal care products; Disney Softlines, which includes apparel, accessories and footwear; Disney Toys; and Disney Home, which includes product categories such as furnishings, decor and accessories.

Under the books and magazines sub segment, Disney Publishing licenses books, magazines and continuity programs. The company licenses characters from its film, television and other properties. The company also publishes children’s books and magazines in multiple countries and languages, reaching more than 100 million readers each month. Disney publishes both Disney branded and non-Disney branded titles through its US children’s book group (which includes Hyperion and Disney Press), Disney Libri in Italy, and Disney Hachette JV in France.

Disney Interactive Studios sub segment creates, develops, markets and distributes multi-platform video games worldwide. BVG primarily focuses on multi-platform games derived from the company’s creative content, such as Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Spectrobes and Meet The Robinsons. DisneyShopping.com offers Disney-themed merchandise through an internet site, which includes internally developed Disney merchandise as well as merchandise from Disney licensees.

Through The Disney Store, the company markets Disney-themed products directly through retail facilities. These facilities are generally located in leading shopping malls and other retail complexes. The stores carry a wide variety of Disney merchandise and promote other businesses of the company. The Disney store is owned and operated in Europe and is franchised in North America and Japan.

Walt Disney – History

Walt Disney and his brother Roy set up Disney Brothers Studio in Hollywood, California in 1923. Plane Crazy, directed by Walt Disney, was the first cartoon to come out of Disney studios in 1928.

In 1937, the studio produced its first animated feature film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. The company went public in 1940 and later went on to produce other classic animaation films such as Pinocchio and Fantasia. In 1955, the Disney Land Theme Park was opened. Disney World opened in Florida in 1971.

The Bass family of Texas, in alliance with Roy Disney, acquired a controlling stake in the company in 1984. During the 1980s, the company launched the Disney Channel and established theme park in Tokyo in 1984. In 1985, the company established Disney MGM studio. A year later, the business changed its name to The Walt Disney Company.

In the early 1990s, the company had a number of successes with animated films such as The Lion King. In 1992, the company continued its international expansion by opening Disneyland Paris. In 1996, the company bought Capital Cities/ABC for $19 billion which included 10 TV stations, 21 radio stations, seven daily newspapers, and ownership positions in the cable networks A&E, Lifetime, History Channel and the powerhouse sports network, ESPN, and in 1998, it purchased web services from Starwave, a Seattle based software company. It also acquired 43% of internet search engine Infoseek for $70 million and launched the GO network, in 1999. The company then bought the remaining 57% of infoseek and formed GO.com, a web portal, which eventually became Walt Disney Internet Group.

In the early 2001, the company expanded its theme parks in Anaheim, the US and restructured its internet business.Walt Disney re-entered into a multi-year agreement with Eastman Kodak to make Kodak the exclusive imaging supplier of film and related products at Disney theme parks and resorts in the US and France as well as for the Disney Cruise Line in 2002. In the same year, Walt Disney, Bank One and Visa announced two multi-year, strategic alliances that created Disney-branded Visa card with Disney rewards, as well as provided Visa with joint marketing opportunities across Disney’s various business units.

Disney entered into a ten year strategic alliance with HP to develop new technologies and enhanced entertainment experiences in 2003. In the following year, Walt Disney ended the partnership with Pixar after failing to come to an agreement on how to split future revenues. Comcast announced plans to acquire Walt Disney in a deal worth around $66 billion in the same year. Its offer for Walt Disney was later turned down. At the end of 2004, The Children’s Place Retail Stores and Walt Disney entered into an agreement for The Children’s Place to acquire and operate the Disney Store retail chain in North America, which included 313 stores.

Mr. Henry Samueli and his wife, Orange County entrepreneurs and philanthropists, in 2005 purchased the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, the National Hockey League Club based in Orange County, California from the Walt Disney. During the mid of 2005, the Monday Night Football moved to ESPN under an eight-year agreement with the National Football League. In the same year, Buena Vista Games (BVG), the interactive entertainment arm of Walt Disney, strengthened game development capabilities through the acquisition of Salt Lake City-based video game developer, Avalanche Software, and established a start-up development studio in Vancouver, Canada. Also in 2005, Walt Disney’s internet group acquired Minds Eye, one of the leading interactive TV games developers. The company and Verizon agreed for a long term programming contract, Disney and ESPN networks and services.

Walt Disney and Citadel Broadcasting Corporation combined ABC Radio, which included 22 radio stations and the ABC Radio Networks, with Citadel Broadcasting in 2006. In the same year 2006, the company acquired computer animation company Pixar. The company launched Disney Mobile www.disneymobile.com in the US with innovative features that, for the first time, allowed parents to directly manage their family’s wireless experience, during the year. Walt Disney acquired Hungama TV, a leading Indian children’s television channel, and also acquired an equity interest in media company, UTV Software Communications.Wenner Media acquired US Weekly from Disney in the same year.

Later in 2006, Comcast and Walt Disney entered into a long-term comprehensive distribution agreement that extended their relationship into the next decade for the 10 ABC-owned broadcast television stations and Disney’s leading networks and services included: Disney Channel, ABC Family, Toon Disney, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Classic, ESPNEWS, ESPN HD and increased carriage of SOAPnet. In addition, Comcast launched ESPN Deportes, a stand-alone Spanish-language sports network, and the companies formalized their ESPN2 HD agreement. Comcast also acquired Walt Disney’s stake in E! Networks in two tranches. At the end of 2006, ESPN acquired NASN, the European channel dedicated to North American sports, from Setanta Sport Holdings and Benchmark Capital Europe. ESPN was 80% owned by ABC, an indirect subsidiary of Walt Disney.

In the early 2007, the Disney-ABC Television Group renamed its in-house production company, Touchstone Television, as the ABC Television Studio. The company announced its plans to expand cruise business by adding two new ocean liners in February 2007, which is scheduled to be launched in 2011 and 2012. In March 2007, the company started work on The Frog Princess an animated fairy tale and intends to release it in 2009. The company spun-off its wholly owned subsidiary, ABC Radio Holdings and subsequently merged with a wholly-owned subsidiary of Citadel, in June 2007. In the same month, the company announced an integrated global television distribution unit.

In June 2007, the company acquired Club Penguin, one of the fastest-growing online virtual worlds for kids. The addition of Club Penguin to Disney’s existing online assets would further strengthen the company’s objective of establishing clear leadership in online virtual worlds for kids and families. At the end of the year, the company’s international TV licensing arm, Disney-ABC International Television, entered a multi-year partnership with Russian state broadcaster Channel One.

Disney’s subsidiary The Walt Disney Company (Southeast Asia) increased its strategic investment in UTV, in February 2008. In the following month, the company entered in advanced discussions with The Children’s Place Retail Stores, to explore terms under which Disney might acquire ownership of a portion of the Disney Store chain in North America.

In April 2008, the company unveiled a diverse and ambitious slate of 10 new animated feature films from Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios to be released through the year 2012. In the same month, The Walt Disney Studios announced the debut of ‘Earth’, the first feature-length nature documentary from its new production banner, Disneynature. The company launched Disney En Familia, a new Spanish-language magazine in May 2008.

Walt Disney – Key Employees


Name

Job Title

Board

Compensation

Robert A. Iger

President and Chief Executive Officer

Executive Board

27699201 USD

John E. Pepper

Chairman

Non Executive Board

439887 USD

Susan E. Arnold

Director

Non Executive Board

56003 USD

John E. Bryson

Director

Non Executive Board

204085 USD

Steve Jobs

Director

Non Executive Board

Robert W. Matschullat

Director

Non Executive Board

219340 USD

John S. Chen

Director

Non Executive Board

196326 USD

Fred H. Langhammer

Director

Non Executive Board

186175 USD

Judith L. Estrin

Director

Non Executive Board

223791 USD

Aylwin B. Lewis

Director

Non Executive Board

202009 USD

Orin C. Smith

Director

Non Executive Board

158413 USD

Monica C. Lozano

Director

Non Executive Board

242164 USD

Thomas O. Staggs

Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Senior Management

9048714 USD

Alan N. Braverman

Senior Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary

Senior Management

7857923 USD

Kevin A. Mayer

Executive Vice President, Corporate Strategy, Business Development and Technology Group

Senior Management

2633679 USD

Christine M McCarthy

Executive Vice President, Corporate Finance and Real Estate and Treasurer

Senior Management

Dennis W. Shuler

Executive Vice President, and Chief Human Resources Officer

Senior Management