Instagram, Disney, L'Oreal and more...

The Business And Finance News You Need To Know
Charlie Richardson
24 January 2021
Instagram, Disney, L'Oreal and more...

Here's your weekly round-up of the business and finance news you need-to-know. | In a flashInstagram Swoops With TikTok's Hands TiedMickey Is Not So FineL'Oreal's Digital Cover-up Instagram Swoops With TikTok's Hands Tied | What happened and why... While TikTok fights for its Western future, Instagram has sniffed an opportunity. The Facebook-owned social giant is looking to lure over the growing number of TikTok creators after rolling out its own direct competitor - Reels. The feature was launched in 50+ countries yesterday - including the UK - on both iOS and Android. What are we reeling with... ๐Ÿ’ƒ Think TikTok... Reels lets people create short-form vids with a cherry-picked tune, that can be shared with followers and discovered within the IG app.๐ŸŽจ And all the toppings... Reelers can record 15-second videos, add a bunch of filters and special effects, to spice things up. For creatives... The IG creative lovers out there will be turning to Reels to build that following. With another revamped to Insta's Explore page, Reels will now own its own special landing spot, with the option to vertically scroll. In other words, just like TikTok's 'For you' page. For Insta... Itโ€™s a fresh opportunity to bring in users, increase user dwell time in the app, and become that home for video entertainment. Gram is focusing on what it does best: 'create easy-to-use tech'. With reels, there are a LOT of moving parts; a camera with a number of tools, various recording options (including 'save to photos), and a range of options with special effects, timer, and messing around with the speed... so those user-experience skills are tested to the max. | The Takeaway The launch of Reels comes as TikTok faces a possible ban stateside or a potential acquisition by Microsoft. Owner ByteDance is already accusing the company of plagiarising its product with Reels. Robby Stein, IG's product chief, Robby Stein, was quick to point out the two products are different... he just didn't really say how. ๐Ÿพ Copycats can win... We have seen this before with Instagram. When Stories landed in 2016, people spotted a Snapchat clone but it proved a hit and quickly ate Snapchat breakfast, lunch, and dinner. That has undoubtedly spured on Instagram to deliver Reels. Mickey Is Not So Fine... | What happened and why... When Disney (+12.57%) laid off 100,000+ employees, there was little sympathy for the media giant... so don't expect any now. The creative powerhouse saw its sales plunge 42%, as the customer drought left Mickey & Co. twiddling their thumbs. Only last year, Disney was reeling off monster profits. This time around, Disney served up a $5bn loss as Disneyworld, land, cruises, and holiday destinations were in lockdown. While diversity may have softened the blow, coronavirus has left a huge dent in this leisure giant... ๐ŸŽฌ And Cut... the media and entertainment business saw sales sink 55% with the cinema industry coming to a standstill. Expected money-drawing Mulan has been on pause for a long time and now it's straight into 'home cinema', with the film available for $30 (yes, thirty) on Disney+.๐Ÿฐ Destination experiences are even worse... as theme-park department saw sales plunge 85% - adding $2bn alone to Disney's loss-making game. But every cloud has a streaming lining... and Disney+ - which only launched last year - now has 60m paying subscribers and the company's two other steaming brands, Hulu and ESPN, make it 100m in total. While Disneyโ€™s financial reality in the fiscal third quarter was fairly bleak, with theme-park losses and entertainment erosion, streaming continues to be a beacon of hope that investors can really get on board with. | The Takeaway The 'click-of-a-button-economy'... has gone into overdrive since the pandemic struck. Disney's foray into the streaming world has proven a stroke of diversity genius and in a market where investors are scouring for opportunities, Disney is suddenly a rare streaming growth story and a COVID recovery play. And CEO, Bob Chapek, hinted at even more streaming service to drop next year.