ORLANDO, Fla. — The Walt Disney Company is celebrating a big year for revenues in 2018, driven by growth at the theme parks and with studio entertainment.
- Attendance, spending up at Disney's domestic parks
- Studio entertainment also saw big growth
- Disney+ streaming service coming in late 2019
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Disney reported Thursday that attendance is up in 4 percent at the domestic theme parks, and per-capita spending was up 9 percent.
Revenue-wise, results for the fourth quarter are up 9 percent to $5.1 billion. The company says the numbers should reflect the impact of Hurricane Irma in the same quarter of 2017.
For the fiscal year, the parks saw a revenue increase 10 percent to $20.3 billion.
Guest spending growth was due to increases in ticket prices, food, beverage and merchandise spending, and average daily room rates.
Disney also notes that there was an increase in costs because of labor and other cost inflation. That includes the 2018 bonus for domestic employees, and because of projects being abandoned.
Disney's domestic parks is preparing for the new Star Wars lands coming to Disneyland and Walt Disney World in 2019. Disney CEO Robert Iger said the size, scale and impact of the new lands will mean new challenges in managing the demand for those parks.
"Not only are they big in size and scale, they are huge in ambition," Disney CEO Robert Iger said, regarding the immersive experiences expected with Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge.
Disney also trumpeted a big year for studio entertainment. The fourth quarter included Incredibles 2 and Ant-Man and the Wasp.
Overall, the Disney studio division generated about $3 billion for 2018.
They are expecting another big year for fiscal 2019, with Ralph Breaks the Internet and Mary Poppins Returns in November and December, plus Captain Marvel, the Avengers 4 film, Toy Story 4, and others in 2019.
Disney also announced the new name of its upcoming streaming service will be Disney+, which is expected to launch in late 2019.
The streaming service will combine several products under the Disney umbrella, including new original programming and theatrical releases.
Iger announced that a new live-action series for Star Wars, focusing on Rogue One character Cassian Andor, with actor Diego Luna returning.
Disney is also developing a series based on the character Loki, played by Tom Hiddleston.
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