CODA’s Oscar Wins are a ‘Game Changer’ for Apple

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/Shutterstock (11926773i)In this photo illustration the Apple TV+ (Plus) logo seen displayed on a smartphone screen.
Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/Shutterstock / Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/Shutterstock

Apple made history on March 27 at the 94th Annual Academy Awards, as “CODA” won three Academy Awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, with wins for Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor for Troy Kotsur, and Best Adapted Screenplay for Siân Heder. This is the first time a streaming service won an Oscar for Best Picture.

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Now, analysts say that this historic moment is a “game-changer for Apple on its content efforts” and hence a major win for Apple’s stock.

Dan Ives, Wedbush Securities analyst said that Apple made history being the first streamer to win an Academy Award for Best Picture with the groundbreaking film “CODA.”

“For Apple which launched Apple TV+ in late 2019 to win an Oscar for Best Picture within 3 years of launching its streaming service is a surreal moment for Cook & Co. as many within the traditional Hollywood circles thought Apple would flop on its streaming ambitions, Ives wrote in a note sent to GOBankingRates. “We also believe that Apple being the first streamer to win Best Picture and not Netflix or Amazon on the podium is a ‘drop the mic moment’ for Cupertino that should significantly bolster its subscriber base while attracting more A+ Hollywood talent to its platform for future projects.”

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“Team CODA created a profoundly beautiful movie, a story of hope and heart that celebrates our differences. Congratulations to the producers, @SianHeder, @TroyKotsur, @MarleeMatlin,  @EmiliaJonesy, @DanielNDurant, @EugenioDerbez, and all involved in these historic wins!,” Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted.

Wedbush’s Ives added that  this Oscar “legitimizes the Apple TV+ as a major streaming platform with much more success ahead and the Street now starting to take more notice.”

Wedbush estimates that today Apple has roughly 25 million paid subscribers on the platform and 50 million global accounts, “clearly is a fraction of the subs that other streaming stalwarts have on their platform, with Cupertino now trying to figure out their path to growth and streaming ambitions for the next decade.”

Ives wrote that consumer subscriber growth should accelerate from Apple’s Oscar win and will give Cook & Co. more confidence around potentially doubling their content efforts over the next year.

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“With Apple spending about $7 billion annually on original content and having roughly $200 billion of cash on its balance sheet, we believe the company is gearing up to ramp original content and also bid on a number of upcoming sports packages (NFL Sunday Night Ticket) coming up for contract/renewals in future years,” he wrote. “Taking a step back, Apple TV+ is a small, but highly strategic component of the overall services ecosystem ($80 billion annual revenue in FY22) that is becoming a key monetization engine for the company over the coming years to tap its golden and unmatched installed base.”

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Wedbush said it maintained its Outperform rating on the stock and a $200 price target. Apple stock opened at $173.93 today.

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About the Author

Yaël Bizouati-Kennedy is a full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major NYC-based financial companies, including New York Life and MSCI. Yaël is now freelancing and most recently, she co-authored  the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare,” with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in Journalism from New York University and one in Russian Studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.

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