Disney restructures business in the face of digital disruption

MUMBAI: Walt Disney Co, on Wednesday, announced a sweeping restructuring aimed at accelerating its global expansion during a period of upheaval for Hollywood.

The entertainment giant said it would combine its international media business and its content streaming operation into one unit and create another division to house its consumer products business along with Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

Its biggest restructuring in recent years, Disney's move is the latest effort by a legacy entertainment and media company to adapt to rapid changes in consumer behaviour driven by digital technology.

Disney had been expected to make structural changes as it prepared to launch two streaming services and buy film and TV assets owned by 21st Century Fox—a $52.4 billion deal that requires federal regulatory approval.

Disney's new direct-to-consumer and international unit will include the upcoming ESPN+ streaming service, which launches later this year, and a Disney-branded film and TV streaming offering scheduled to debut in 2019.

The unit also will include video-on-demand service Hulu, in which Disney would own a controlling stake if the Fox deal is approved. Kevin Mayer, who has been Disney's chief strategy officer since 2015, was named chairman of the new global business.

The combining of Disney's parks and resorts business and its consumer products group will help streamline operations for units that already had their share of overlap.

Bob Chapek, who has headed Disney Parks and Resorts since 2015, was named chairman of the new unit. As its leader, Chapek will assume additional responsibility for all of Disney's consumer products operations globally, including licensing and Disney stores.

Disney chairman and chief executive Robert Iger said in a statement that the changes would position the company "for the future, creating a more effective, global framework to serve consumers worldwide, increase growth and maximise shareholder value."

In December, with the announcement of the prospective Fox deal, Iger, 67, extended his contract by three years; he is now expected to retire in 2021 when his new pact ends.

The restructuring plan, which is effective immediately, elevates key lieutenants Mayer and Chapek, who now are poised to work more closely with Iger for the remainder of his tenure.

Their promotions come amid much speculation about who will be chosen as Iger's successor.

Chapek was head of Disney Consumer Products before being tapped to lead the parks group. The 58-year-old executive also previously was president of distribution for Walt Disney Studios.

The last time Disney restructured its business units was in 2015, when it merged its interactive and consumer products units, a move that was designed to better align once-distant businesses that new technology had brought closer together.

Two Disney units - media networks and studio entertainment - are remaining the same, save for minor changes, such as the studio's programme sales operation moving to the direct-to-consumer and international unit.

Also read:

Merger talks on the anvil once again for CBS, Viacom

With Star India, Disney emerges as India's largest M&E firm

The year of sex scandals

Latest Reads
Republic Media to run exclusive series on Indian armed forces ‘India’s Braves’ around Repubic Day

MUMBAI: As India gears up for the celebration of its 72nd Republic Day, Republic Media Network has lined up an exclusive broadcast series from the valley of Kashmir. Republic Media Network's senior consulting editor - strategic affairs major Gaurav Arya (retd.) is all set to take viewers across the...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
Odisha leaps ahead with India’s first Women’s T20 tournament

BHUBANESHWAR: With the resumption of live sports in the country, Indians are lining up for a shot of cricket. And what better way to energise the nation in these Covid times than with the most dynamic and exhilarating format of the game – the T20. Leading the way in this direction is the inaugural...

Television TV Channels Sports
Saregama PAT triples in third quarter of FY 2021

BENGALURU: Indian music label and movie studio Saregama India Ltd (Saregama) reported more than 200 per cent (201.5 per cent) Y-o-Y (year-on-year) growth in consolidated net profit after tax (PAT) for the quarter ended 31 December 2020 (Q3 2021, quarter or period under review) as compared to the...

Television TV Channels Music and Youth
Hero ISL sees uptick in viewership, fans keep the momentum high

MUMBAI : Cricket is indeed big in India. Globally, however, it’s football and football all the way, and the willow game has a long way to go before it catches up with it.  In India, in times of Coronavirus and cricket, soccer has been holding its own, especially with the seventh India Super League...

Television TV Channels Sports
All set for launch, ABP Studios to tell balanced stories beyond black & white

It was in July last year that what used to be known as the ABP News Network rechristened itself as ABP Network, and started on a journey to go “beyond news” and disrupt the ever-growing content-ecosphere with new capabilities.

Television Production House Fiction
Vidnet 2021: UK-based production body PACT partners with IFTPC

The Indian film & TV industry is counted among the entertainment powerhouses of the world. The Indian filmmakers, artistes, behind-the-camera personages who have been feted internationally are beyond count, as are the movies and series that left an indelible mark on our society and culture.

Television Production House Post Production
Enterr10 Network’s Bhojpuri Cinema celebrates Republic Day with 'Farz'

MUMBAI: On the occasion of Republic Day, Bhojpuri Cinema is all set to entertain their audiences with a full packed and romance movie with the World television premiere of Bhojiwood’s biggest hits Farz on 26 January at 7 pm followed by repeat telecast on Wednesday, 27 January at 10 am. Bhojpuri...

Television TV Channels Regional
Cartoon Network gets Cosmos-Maya’s Dabangg cartoon show

MUMBAI: Iconic cop Chulbul Pandey is coming to the small screen in an animated avatar with the quirky and exciting new cartoon called Dabangg - The Animated Series. Produced by Cosmos-Maya, the show is an extension of the highly successful Bollywood film franchise and will debut on WarnerMedia’s...

Television TV Channels Kids
Ormax Media launches its GEC character popularity track in four languages

MUMBAI: In the new year, media insights and consulting firm Ormax Media is focusing on regional language markets in India. As a first step in this direction, the company announced the launch of its syndicated monthly GEC character popularity tracking tool Ormax Characters India Loves (OCIL) in four...

Television TV Channels GECs

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories

* indicates required