Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Mini Disney

Seeking Alpha confirms (like we needed more confirmation?) where the good ship DreamWorks Animation is sailing.

... Segments other than animated films continue to lead the growth at Dreamworks Animation. In the fourth quarter, television made up $47.1 million of the total $204.3 million reported in revenue. Consumer products brought in $12.4 million in the fourth quarter. Both television and consumer products were led by strong results from the brands acquired from Classic Media. The acquisition of Classic Media, which I highlighted at the initial bidding process, has paid off for Dreamworks Animation and continues to help the company see new revenue sources in both television and licensing.

In the third quarter, television revenue was $18.2 million and was led by Classic Media and "Dragons: Riders of Berk". Consumer revenue was $12.0 million in the third quarter, led by "Turbo" and Classic Media. As you can see, both of these segments had improvements in the fourth quarter, particularly the sharp increase in television revenue, which more than doubled quarter over quarter.

Back in August, I highlighted Dreamworks Animation's push away from film into television and consumer products. This includes an upcoming toy deal with Hasbro (HAS), which could lead to a big partnership going forward if successful.

Another area that is set to boost Dreamworks Animation is theme parks. Similar to Disney, Dreamworks will see its characters as part of theme parks. However, unlike Disney, Dreamworks will license out its popular characters and take in less revenue for less risk of attendance and ticket sales. ...

A couple of years ago, I was handwringing over DWA putting all its eggs in the animated feature basket. When your business model is "make every movie a HIT!" the high wire is tight and humming, you know? back then, DWA had (pretty much) abandoned television ainimation. It hadn't yet acquired other companies or gone into amusement parks in a serious way or branched out into other fields.

High wire act. Under the big top. Clamped to full-length theatrical movies.

But now DreamWorks has branched out, and is following the path of Walt Disney Productions circa 1954. The next step will be to start making live-action television and movies, but I don't anticipate that happening until they've solidified and expanded their latest corporate moves.


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