Los Angeles, CA (Variety) — Disney could have more than 130 million subscribers across its online video services worldwide by 2024, Morgan Stanley analyst Benjamin Swinburne projected in a note to investors Thursday. The forecast resulted in Disney shares trading up 3%, while Netflix shares were down 1%.
In the near term, Swinburne expects Disney to sign up 13 million subscribers by the end of 2020. At that point, Disney could have a total of 50 million subscribers across Disney Plus, Hulu and ESPN Plus.
Swinburne based his projections on Disney's faster-than-expected international launch plans for its upcoming Disney Plus service. Disney Plus is scheduled to launch in the U.S. in November, and then come to Western Europe in late 2019 and early 2020. Roll-out across the Asia-Pacific region will begin in late 2019 and continue through 2021, while a launch in Latin America is planned for early 2021.
At the low end, Disney Plus should gain 60-90 million subscribers in 5 years, Swinburne argued, noting that this would only represent 10% of addressable broadband homes, compared to the 25-30% that Netflix has been able to capture. Even with those conservative numbers, Disney Plus could be profitable by 2024, thanks in part … — Janko Roettgers/@Variety