Before Disney+ launched in early 2019, the Walt Disney Company held an Investor Day, saying that it was planning on getting Disney+ to between 60 million and 90 million subscribers globally by 2024.
Then following the successful launch of Disney+ in November 2019, at the Investor Day in 2020, where the prediction of how many subscribers Disney+ would have globally was drastically increased due to the pandemic super charging cord cutting and the vast library of content available. Pushing the new guidance to somewhere between 230 million and 260 million subscribers worldwide by 2024.
However, during the latest quarterly investors’ call, Disney lowered its projections to between 215 million and 245 million. With the core Disney+ target range sitting between 135 million and 165 million subscribers for 2024. And Disney+ Hotstar having around 80 million subscribers by 2024.
A reduction in their target of around 15 million subscribers. This lowering of expected subscribers is due to several reasons. The biggest reason, is that by Disney+ Hotstar not securing some Cricket streaming rights in India, Disney+ Hotstar will likely lose millions of subscribers.
Also, Disney+ has fewer countries to launch in, so while it added over 14 million subscribers recently, it won’t be able to get substantial increases as quickly.
Other issues will factor into people subscribing and unsubscribing to Disney+ in the next two years. Disney has already announced a significant shift is coming for the streaming service with the launch of an ad-supported tier on December 8th 2022, in the US, with an international version coming next year. This will allow families more flexibility in getting a cheaper version of Disney+ with ads, but with the price point being the current price, many might not few it as such a bargain.
Other factors will include the recession hitting people’s pockets, so streaming services will be a luxury some people will go without. Not having content that people want to watch and also the pandemic boost will no doubt slow down.
What do you think of Disney reducing its subscription target?