Company History and Background
The Walt Disney Company (commonly known as Disney) was originally founded on October 16, 1923, as The Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio by Roy and Walt Disney. The initial Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio became an established leader within the animation industry before expanding into the multifaceted and international mass media corporation that it is today. The company took on its current official name in 1986 and is now the largest media conglomerate in the world in regards to total revenue. In collaboration with its 142 subsidiaries, Disney owns and operates: broadcast and cable television networks, publishing, merchandising, theatre divisions, a music division, and 14 amusement parks worldwide. Disney has been a constituent of the Dow Jones Industrial Average since 1991 and is headquartered in Burbank, California. Disney is traded in the New York Stock Exchange and listed as: DIS.
Past Corporate Performances Index
Over the past five years Disney has shown a slight growth in net income and revenue as well as maintaining a stable net profit percentage, which can be seen in Figure 1 on the next page.
Figure 1: 2009-2013 Financial Revenue and Profit Margin Overview
Source: Google Finance NYSE DIS
Disney has a Debt to Total Capital ratio of 24.56%, which is lower than that of previous years (Financial Times, DIS:NYQ).
· Mission Statement: “The mission of The Walt Disney Company is to be one of the world’s leading producers and providers of entertainment and information. Using our portfolio of brands to differentiate our content, services and consumer products, we seek to develop the most creative, innovative and profitable entertainment experiences and related products in the world.”
· Current Strategies revolve around the drive to fully develop and monetize franchises and to increase the company’s international presence. This is put into motion through Disney’s self defined ‘chain of excellence’. This chain includes; leadership excellence, cast (employee) excellence, guest satisfaction, and financial results.
Disney competes in many business segments but has the advantage of having the Entertainment and Sports Programming Network (ESPN) in its portfolio, accounting for about 50% of the company’s total profits.
Top competitors of Disney include:
· Time Warner Inc. (TWX) – A multinational media corporation based in New York City. It is the world’s second largest entertainment and media conglomerate in terms of revenue. Key holdings include Time Inc., Turner Broadcasting, Warner Brothers Entertainment, and HBO.
· Viacom Inc. (VIA) – Global mass media company focused in cable television and cinema. The world’s fourth largest media conglomerate. Key holdings include Paramount Pictures, BET Networks, and Viacom International Media.
· Twenty-First Century Fox (FOXA) – A multinational mass media corporation formed from the 2013 split of News Corporation. Key assets include the Fox Entertainment Group and its array of Fox subdivisions.
· Comcast Corporation (CMCSA) – Enormous mass media and communications company. The largest cable company and Internet service provider within the United States. Key holdings include NBC Universal Inc. and Universal Pictures.
· CBS Corporation (CBS) – Mass media corporation concentrated on television production, commercial broadcasting, and publishing.