According to a new Wall Street report released by Wells Fargo last week, Disney is ready to turbo boost spending on new content from an already unprecedented level in fiscal year 2020. Wells Fargo estimates that Disney spent $28.9 billion on new content for their direct to consumer (dtc) division in 2020, this includes projects for Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+, for the current fiscal year, 2021, it is estimated Disney will spend $30.5 billion on new content.
Disney’s spending will go toward a wide range of projects, including upcoming feature films that are set for a Disney+ release, like Pinocchio and Peter Pan and Wendy, upcoming big budget Star Wars and Marvel series, and expanding their sports offerings both domestically and internationally.
The spending by the Mouse House dwarfs that of their closest rivals. NBC Universal is set to spend $18 billion, Netflix is set to spend $17.4 billion, and WarnerMedia $16.7 billion. While this level of spending is unprecedented, it is roughly half of what Disney has planned.
The biggest edge that Disney has in the streaming wars is that it has numerous sources of revenue outside of their streaming services, this includes their theme parks, cruise line, retail, licensing, linear media (ABC, Freeform, FX), and motion picture studio. This gives them access to a tremendous amount of cash to invest into their services.
ViacomCBS, Amazon, and Apple round out the rest of the big name streamers.