Trouble at Disney Will Not Go Away

Despite the best efforts of Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) management and board, the company’s poor image on Wall Street will not go away. Its stock, down 45% in the past year, refuses to post even the weakest rally. Its shares are also down over the past month.
Disney’s board made the unexpected move of giving a three-year contract extension to CEO Bob Chapek.

Disney’s problems can be divided into three pieces. One is that earnings fell in the most recent quarter, down 48% to $0.26 per share. The second is that the company’s advertising revenue likely will be hit by a recession.

The third problem is the worry that the streaming media business in America is saturated. Certainly, the most recent numbers from Netflix show that. While Disney has 205 million subscribers, the figure grew very slowly in the most recent quarter.

There continues to be the nagging issue that Chapek is not as talented a chief executive as his predecessor, Bob Iger, who ran Disney from 2005 until 2020. Iger was one of the great entertainment CEOs of the 21st century. As Disney navigates a tough period, he would come in handy.

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