Disney's strong streaming growth dispels Netflix gloom

STORY: Disney on Wednesday eased concerns about streaming video by reporting that it had picked up 7.9 million new Disney+ customers from January through March.

The numbers beat Wall Street’s new subscriber expectations of 5.3 million for the quarter, but Disney still has a long way to go to hit ambitious, multi-year targets.

Disney needs to average nearly 9.1 million new customers per quarter to reach the low end of its goal of adding 230 million to 260 million Disney+ subscribers by the end of September 2024.

The world's largest entertainment company has staked its future on building a streaming TV business to rival Netflix - the company that first drew mass audiences to subscription video.

Netflix unnerved Wall Street last month when the company disclosed it lost subscribers in the first three months of 2022 and forecast more defections through June.

Total subscriptions for Disney+, launched in November 2019, reached 137.7 million.

Revenue came in at $19.2 billion, below the $20.03 billion consensus estimate.

Shares of the entertainment giant fell 3% in after-hours trading.

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