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Disney Set for Sharply Lower Open After Iger Reveals Big Bet on Media Group's Future

Walt Disney & Co. (DIS) shares are expected to open sharply lower Wednesday after the media group reported slower-than-expected second quarter revenue growth at its cable division last night and said it would invest in online streaming streaming services to offset falling ad sales.

CEO Bob Iger said Disney would stop providing new films to Netflix Inc.s streaming platform in 2019 as the group rolls out its own service following the launch of an ESPN-branded sports offering sometime next year. While no costs were revealed by Iger as he spoke to investors following the group's second-quarter earnings release, the move, as well as a newly-announced $1.6 billion deal to up its stake in BamTech, will likely impact earnings growth in the near-term.

"It's high time given the technology available to us that we connect to them directly," Iger said on an investor conference call to discuss Disney's quarterly earnings. "We...