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Disney could use some Baby Yoda mojo

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An animatronic Baby Yoda toy is pictured during a "Star Wars" advance product showcase in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., February 20, 2020. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

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NEW YORK, Nov 10 (Reuters Breakingviews) - Walt Disney (DIS.N) is learning the negatives that come along with Disney+. When the flagship streaming service launched two years ago, “The Mandalorian” helped propel it to Netflix-like (NFLX.O) status. But on Wednesday, Disney missed its subscriber estimates for Disney+ for the quarter ending Oct. 2 nabbing some 118 million customers below the 126 million that analysts reckoned, according to data compiled by FactSet. A lack of compelling content is a swing factor.

Chief Executive Bob Chapek warned of the slowdown in September blaming a clogged content pipe related to the pandemic. A series with buzz can do wonders. Indeed, Netflix blew past its own subscriber forecast during the last quarter on the popularity of the South Korean TV series “Squid Game.”

Disney’s shares fell around 5% in after-hours trading Wednesday, suggesting the competition is intensifying. The company’s total shareholder return year-to-date is down around 4%. Netflix’s, meanwhile, is up around 20%. The House of Mouse could use the latest series starring Baby Yoda. (By Jennifer Saba)

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Editing by Lauren Silva Laughlin and Thomas Shum

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