Disney Princess Proves She’s Still The Fairest Of The Land; Girls’ Lifestyle Brand Set To Become World’s Largest In 2006

Disney Consumer Products (DCP) (NYSE:DIS) announced today that Disney Princess will add another jewel to her tiara in 2005: $3 billion in worldwide consumer products retail sales. The young girls’ lifestyle brand continues to expand into more categories and countries, such as India, and with the release and marketing of the Cinderella Platinum Edition DVD this October and Little Mermaid Platinum Edition DVD in Fall 2006 to support its popularity, the brand is on track to become the largest global girls franchise in 2006 with 40% growth in 2005 and 300% growth over the last three years.

The eight princesses — Ariel, Belle, Cinderella, Jasmine, Mulan, Pocahontas, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White — were brought together under the same marketing umbrella by DCP in 2000, at a time when $300 million of individual Princess merchandise was sold. The branding move resulted in a sales explosion.

“The last year has been particularly significant for Disney Princess because we’ve seen the franchise enthusiastically embraced by the company’s other divisions,” said Andy Mooney, chairman of DCP in a presentation at the 2005 Licensing Show in New York. “Disney’s parks and resorts, home entertainment and records divisions continue to rollout great new entertainment which helps to inspire little girls to be a Disney Princess.”

Expect even more buzz for Disney Princess in the second half of 2005 when Disney brings the classic film Cinderella out of the vault it has occupied for the last 10 years for the first-ever DVD release in October. Projected to be among the top videos of 2005, the DVD will be supported by a breadth of new Cinderella products — incremental to Disney Princess merchandise — in all major product categories, including toys, apparel, electronics, consumer goods, stationery, home furnishings and much more. The new products will be available beginning in September 2005 and into the holidays and 2006, and will feature a “Magical Lights” theme with elements that illuminate and captivate little girls.

At retail, Cinderella will reign the sales floor with promotional support from Wal-Mart, Target, Toys ‘R’ Us, Best Buy and other retailers in the US and Carrefour, Asda, ECI and other retailers in Europe. Additionally, Disney has lined up Mattel, Kellogg’s, Home Depot and Jolly Time Popcorn as marketing partners in a campaign that will rival that of Disney’s The Lion King.

“Little girls are initially drawn to the rich, compelling stories and expect their dolls, costumes, apparel and many other products to have more than a picture of just any young woman wearing a tiara and gown,” said Mary Beech, vice president, Girls Marketing and Franchise Management, Disney Consumer Products. “With the reintroduction of the Cinderella and Little Mermaid stories over the next few years, everyone will be reminded why Disney Princess rises above the others that attempt to imitate.”

Disney Princess’ successes span around the globe with merchandise, theatrical releases, home videos, television, theme park attractions, a website, radio air play and live entertainment. In total, girls have access to 2 billion hours of immersion into the Disney Princess experience, most recently with “Cinderellabration,” a new show introduced at the Walt Disney World Resort in May as part of the “Happiest Celebration on Earth.” Playing several times a day to an enraptured audience of little girls, it is the most lavish appearance yet by the Disney Princesses where little girls can meet their favorite Princess and dress up in regal attire including “Cinderellabration”-inspired gowns and glittering tiaras

Additionally, Disney Princess boasts platinum status on Billboard’s Children’s Chart and has three titles in the Top 25 chart with the “Disney Princess Collection” from Walt Disney Records; it reigns as the #1 licensed Halloween costume assortment for 4 years in a row; and has garnered a 10 million worldwide circulation with 30 editions of its Disney Princess magazine, available in 75 countries. The brand continues to be the fastest growing, nearly universally recognized brand Disney has ever created.

About Disney Consumer Products

Disney Consumer Products (DCP) is the business segment of The Walt Disney Company (DIS) that extends the Disney brand to merchandise ranging from apparel, toys, home decor and books to interactive games, food and beverages, electronics and animation art. This is accomplished through the work of DCP’s various lines of business: Disney Toys, Disney Softlines, Disney Hardlines, Disney Publishing, Buena Vista Games and Baby Einstein. The Disney Store, which debuted in 1987, also falls under DCP, through stores currently owned and operated by unaffiliated third parties under licensing agreements in North America and Japan, and wholly owned by Disney in Europe.