Disney+ was created in 2019 as a direct competitor to the then fearless Netflix. It’s currently listed in over a hundred markets and has over 164 million subscribers globally, which are definitely interesting numbers. However, Disney hasn’t been doing as well as expected of late, and so the unpopular layoffs are coming.
The empire has stalled
The fact is that the Disney group is one of the most influential and powerful moguls in the film industry. But as the saying goes, no tree grows to the sky and it was more or less to be expected that some of the problems might show up over time. Indeed, the Disney+ platform grew at a meteoric pace after its inception, but it has now hit reality.
As The Verge reports, the streaming giant lost 2.4 million subscribers in the last quarter of last year, which is certainly not a small number and the first decline for Disney+ since its launch. In the U.S. and Canada, for example, the platform has seen measly gains of 200,000 subscribers, and the Hulu and ESPN Plus branches are showing similarly slow growth.
Slump in Asia
Although analysts predicted that Disney+ would lose some of its subscribers, the drop was larger than expected. In Asia, the streaming giant was hit hard by the loss of rights to cricket broadcasts, which of course India cannot do without, and so in Southeast Asia Disney+ lost almost 4 million subscribers (3.8 million) almost immediately.
Overall, while the multimedia giant posted a 13% increase in revenue, to $5.3 billion, crucially, profits went down. Disney posted an operating loss of $1.1 billion for last year, which was attributed to higher costs on the Disney+ and Hulu platforms. That’s where the unpopular cost-cutting comes in, and where else to start but with employees.
Disney will lay off
Across all of Disney, 7,000 employees are expected to lose their jobs, and as Bob Iger, the company’s CEO, stated, the goal is to save $5.5 billion in costs. It was not specified what positions will be affected by these layoffs, however, along with this move, hiring has also been completely stopped. In short, the earthquake at Disney is in full swing.