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San Francisco (AFP) – US entertainment giant Disney said Wednesday its flagship streaming service, which competes with Netflix and Amazon, grew slower than expected in the recently ended quarter.


Disney+ has reached 118 subscribers worldwide, but analysts had predicted millions more would sign up, resulting in a miss that saw the entertainment giant’s share price slip in after-market trades.

Disney Company chief executive Bob Chapek told analysts on an earnings call that the company aimed to nearly double the amount of content from its marquee brands at its eponymous streaming service.

“We recognize that the most effective way to grow our platforms worldwide is with great content,” Chapek said on the call.

Rival Netflix has also promised to significantly bolster is line-up of original programming after suffering from pandemic-caused production delays.

Disappointing growth at Disney+ came as the company tried to regain momentum in its travel and theme park businesses, which have suffered due to the pandemic.

“We’ve made great strides in reopening our businesses while taking meaningful and innovative steps in Direct-to-Consumer and at our Parks, particularly with our popular new Disney Genie and Magic Key offerings,” Chapek said.

Disney also planned a major promotion on Friday to mark the two-year anniversary this week of the launch of Disney+.

“We’re extremely pleased with the success of our streaming business,” Chapek said.

Disney streaming services include Hulu and sports-focused ESPN+.

Disney’s overall earnings in the quarter fell short of expectations, with the company bringing in less money than analysts envisioned.

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