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Disney Plus Tops 100 Million Mark in Paid Subscriptions

Bob Chapek at Disney's 2020 investor day
Disney CEO Bob Chapekl (Image credit: Disney)

Disney Plus has exceeded 100 million global paid subscribers, according to Walt Disney Co. CEO Bob Chapek.

Disney pivoted from traditional to streaming and launched Disney Plus 16 months ago. It now stands as the leading challenger to streaming leader Netflix, whose rise put most established media companies on notice that the business was changing.

Not coincidentally, Disney stock has been soaring along with streaming subscriptions, hitting the $200 a share mark yesterday.

“The enormous success of Disney Plus —which has now surpassed 100 million subscribers—has inspired us to be even more ambitious, and to significantly increase our investment in the development of high-quality content,” said Disney CEO Bob Chapek at the company’s annual meeting Tuesday.

“In fact, we set a target of 100 plus new titles per year, and this includes Disney Animation, Disney Live Action, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. Our direct-to-consumer business is the Company’s top priority, and our robust pipeline of content will continue to fuel its growth,” Chapek said. 

At its last earnings report, Disney said Disney Plus had 94.9 million subscribers. Overall, Disney's streaming services, including Hulu and ESPN Plus, had 146 million paid subscribers.

Disney Plus launched in the U.S. on November 12, 2019, and has rolled out rapidly across Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, Latin America, and most recently, Singapore.

It has already had a hit streaming shows in The Mandalorian and WandaVision and its upcoming programming plans, presented in December, drew positive reviews from analysts.

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.