It’s the end of an era at the house of Mouse. Bob Iger, the CEO of Disney has stepped down. Bob Chapek was named his successor. The change in chief executives is effective immediately, Disney said Tuesday. Igerwill serve as executive chair of the Disney board until Dec. 31, 2021.
“With the successful launch of Disney’s direct-to-consumer businesses and the integration of Twenty-First Century Fox well under way, I believe this is the optimal time to transition to a new CEO,” Iger said in a statement. “I have the utmost confidence in Bob [Chapek] and look forward to working closely with him over the next 22 months.”
During his 15-year tenure as Disney CEO, Iger secured the $7.4 billion acquisition of Pixar from Apple CEO Steve Jobs in 2006, as well as the $4 billion acquisition of Marvel in 2009 and the $4 billion purchase of Star Wars studio Lucasfilm in 2012.
He oversaw the launch of streaming service Disney Plus at the end of last year, which signed up 28.6 million subscribersin less than three months. Disney also owns streaming services Hulu and ESPN Plus as part of its direct-to-consumer business.
As for Chapek, who is he exactly? Well,
Mr. Chapek’s nearly three decades at Disney have been marked by growth and transformation. A visionary leader, he has championed using creativity and cutting-edge technology to drive expansion and improve the guest and consumer experience, developed and successfully implemented groundbreaking business models, and identified new revenue streams to achieve business objectives and sustain long-term growth.
Before becoming the 7th CEO in Disney’s nearly 100-year history, Mr. Chapek served as Chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products since the segment’s creation in 2018, and prior to that he was Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts since 2015. The Parks, Experiences and Products segment includes Disney’s iconic travel and leisure businesses, which include six resort destinations in the United States, Europe and Asia; a top-rated cruise line; a popular vacation ownership program; and an award-winning guided family adventure business. Disney’s global consumer products operations include the world’s leading licensing business across toys, apparel, home goods, digital games and apps; the world’s largest children’s print publisher; Disney store locations around the world; and the shopDisney e-commerce platform.
During his tenure, Disney Parks saw the largest investment and expansion in its sixty-year history, including the successful opening of Shanghai Disney Resort; nearly doubling the Disney Cruise Line fleet; introducing the most technologically advanced and immersive lands in the parks’ history, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort; the growth of Marvel-inspired attractions across the globe; and one of the most ambitious development projects at Disneyland Paris since the park first opened.
Mr. Chapek’s guest-centric approach focuses on ensuring that every aspect of an experience is uniquely Disney and exceeds guest expectations. At Disney Parks, he implemented innovative strategies to improve the guest experience by balancing demand at the parks, integrating new franchises at locations around the world, and introducing beloved and iconic experiences to new generations of Disney fans. As head of Disney Consumer Products he led a period of transformation in the worlds of play, storytelling, and learning.
Mr. Chapek also served as president of Distribution for The Walt Disney Studios, where he managed the Company’s film content distribution strategy across multiple platforms, and later as president of Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, where he led the organization to record-setting performances and played a key role in the commercialization of the Studio’s film business.
Throughout, Mr. Chapek has made enhancing the employee experience a top priority, and he’s driven initiatives and programs related to education, healthcare, childcare, diversity and inclusion, veteran and active duty military appreciation, and workforce development. Mr. Chapek has also developed a close relationship with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, where he currently serves as a Board Member and helps the organization leverage the power of Disney to make a difference in the lives of children with critical illnesses and their families.
Not a bad choice to leave the keys of the kingdom to…