Disney reported a 10% drop in operating income for its broadcasting division (ABC-TV and its owned stations) to $309 million and a 5% drop in operating income for it cable division (ESPN, Disney Channel, Toon Disney) to $281 million for its fiscal quarter ended Dec. 31.
Revenues at the broadcasting division were essentially flat at $1.72 billion, while cable revenues were up 14% to $1.2 billion. The company cited declines at ABC-TV due to the soft ad marketplace, "lower ratings and higher programming costs." Millionaire and the strong upfront helped to off set the lower ratings and subsequent soft ad market, the company said.
The company said higher costs at ESPN and the soft ad marketplace for that network were somewhat offset by strong results at A&E, Lifetime and the History Channel, in which Disney has equity investments.
- Steve McClellan