Television

Disney shareholders re-elect board; reject split of CEO & chairman roles

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MUMBAI: Shareholders of The Walt Disney Company at the 2015 Annual Meeting today elected all 10 members of the Board of Directors and supported Board recommendations on the Company’s auditor and the advisory vote on executive compensation, based on preliminary results.

Shareholders agreed with the Board in rejecting two shareholder proposals, one regarding the future selection of an independent Board chairman, and the other limiting accelerated executive pay.

Disney chairman and CEO Robert A. Iger welcomed shareholders to the meeting at The Palace of Fine Arts Theatre in San Francisco and introduced independent lead director Orin C. Smith and the other members of the Board of Directors.

"We’ve had four straight years of record results. Driven by extraordinary creativity, innovative technology and global expansion, 2014 was in fact the best year in our history. Our revenue was up 8 per cent to $48.8 billion, our net income was up 22 per cent to $7.5 billion, and our EPS was up 26 per cent to $4.26.

“Total shareholder return for the year was 38 per cent -- almost double the 20 per cent return delivered by the S&P 500 during the same period—and we also paid our 59th straight year of dividends, increasing the dividend per share by 34 per cent,” Iger noted.

Iger introduced Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios chief creative officer John Lasseter, who announced that Disney will be making Frozen 2, reuniting the same creative team and cast from the first film. 

Iger also announced that Star Wars: Episode VIII will be released 26 May, 2017, and that the first stand-alone Star Wars movie featuring characters and events beyond the core Star Wars saga will be titled Rogue One and released in December 2016.

Based on preliminary results, all Disney Directors standing for election were re-elected to the Board: Susan E. Arnold, John S. Chen, Jack Dorsey, Robert A. Iger, Fred H. Langhammer, Aylwin B. Lewis, Monica C. Lozano, Robert W. Matschullat, Sheryl K. Sandberg and Orin C. Smith.

Shareholders ratified the appointment of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP as the company’s independent accountants for the fiscal year ending October 3, 2015. They also approved the advisory resolution on executive compensation.

Final voting tallies from this year’s annual meeting are subject to certification by the company’s inspector of elections, and will be included in the company’s report to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission within a week.

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