(Daily Mail) Walt Disney Company on Monday began 7,000 layoffs announced earlier this year, as CEO Bob Iger works to save the company some $5.5 billion, in a letter sent to employees Monday.
Several major divisions of the company – Disney Entertainment, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, and corporate – will be impacted, according to a person familiar with the matter. The layoffs will also affect Disney workers across the globe, and not just in the United States.
Iger had previously announced the layoffs throughout the company after he took back over as CEO in November.
The cuts come after the company reported profits of $23.51 billion, which exceeded analysts’ expectations of $23.44 billion. The company’s stock price has sunk over 30 percent in the past year, as the company faces controversy over previous CEO Bob Chapek’s disastrous wading into the culture wars.
In addition, the House of Mouse took a huge publicity blow as Ron DeSantis officially took control of Disney’s Reedy Creek Improvement district in his war with the ‘corporate kingdom’ in a move that will give him the power to select the board and force them to pay $700 million in taxes and debts.
Walt Disney Company on Monday began 7,000 layoffs announced earlier this year, as CEO Bob Iger (pictured) works to save the company some $5.5 billion, in a letter sent to employees Monday
It comes as the governor and Florida’s first lady Casey DeSantis admitted the ‘irony’ that they got married at Disney in 2009 and now are in a battle with the ‘woke‘ corporation.
DeSantis celebrated with the stroke of his pen marking the Disney ‘corporate kingdom coming to an end’ as he vowed to make the company pay its fair share of taxes.
The Sunshine State now has power over the formerly self-governing, special tax exempt district encompassing the entire Walt Disney World Resort, which was established in 1967.
‘Disney loses self-governing status, the State of Florida is the new sheriff in town,’ he said at a press briefing Monday. ‘Buckle up – there’s a lot to get done.’
The entertainment industry has undergone a retreat since its early euphoric embrace of video streaming, when established media companies lost billions as they launched competitors to Netflix.
They started to rein in spending when Netflix posted its first loss of subscribers in a decade in early 2022, and Wall Street began prioritizing profitability over subscriber growth.
Iger said Disney would begin notifying the first group of employees who are impacted by the workforce reductions over the next four days.
A second, larger round of job cuts will happen in April, ‘with several thousand more staff reductions.’ The final round will start before the beginning of the summer, the letter said.
The Burbank entertainment conglomerate announced in February that it would eliminate 7,000 jobs as part of an effort to save billions in costs and make its money-losing streaming business profitable
The company’s stock price has sunk over 30 percent in the past year, as the company faces controversy over previous CEO Bob Chapek’s disastrous wading into the culture wars
ESPN is not touched by this week’s round of cuts, but is anticipated to be included in later rounds.
‘The difficult reality of many colleagues and friends leaving Disney is not something we take lightly,’ Iger wrote, noting that many ‘bring a lifelong passion for Disney’ to their work.
Details of the layoffs had been closely guarded by the company, though insiders anticipated reductions would happen before Disney’s annual shareholder meeting on April 3.
Anxiety has been building within Disney, as rumors swirled about areas of possible cuts.
‘It’s a dark, black box,’ said one Disney executive who spoke to Reuters last week.
Many had expected cuts to fall heavily on the Disney Media and Entertainment Division, which was eliminated in a corporate restructuring.
The unit has been without a leader since the exit of Kareem Daniel in November, shortly after Iger returned as the company’s CEO.
‘It’s been a long time in the making,’ said SVB MoffettNathanson analyst Michael Nathanson, adding that the company first began ‘to whisper’ about the need to take out costs last fall, when Bob Chapek was still Disney’s chief executive.