Walt Disney's (DIS 0.85%) bombed third quarter had at least some positive news for investors, and one of the highlights was the strength of the company's streaming networks during the pandemic. Disney+ exceeded expectations, growing to more than 60 million subscriptions in under a year, and together with Hulu and ESPN+ the company has over 100 million subscribers.
Seeing an opportunity, CEO Bob Chapek said Disney will be launching a new streaming service aimed at general audiences under its Star brand.
Riding the streaming wave
Chapek said in a conference call on Tuesday that "The incredible success we've achieved to date has made us even more confident about the future of our direct-to-consumer business and our ability to be more aggressive in our approach." Part of that aggression is coming out in the form of another new subscription streaming service called Star, which it has already used in certain markets.
The new service is meant to offer general entertainment to an international audience culled from the company's many production arms such as ABC Studios, Fox Television, and 20th Century Studios. Disney will integrate the tech and marketing aspects of the brand with Disney+, and it already has a model for this with Disney+ Hotstar in India.
Chapek reiterated several times in the call that Disney sees a wide-open space in direct-to-consumer and has plans to seize the moment, and he said management will explore these plans with investors at an upcoming investors day.