The Walt Disney Company has announced that CEO Bob Iger will be stepping down from his role and to be replaced by Disney Parks chairman, Bob Chapek.
“With the successful launch of Disney’s direct-to-consumer businesses and the integration of Twenty-First Century Fox well underway, I believe this is the optimal time to transition to a new CEO,” Bob Iger said. “I have the utmost confidence in Bob and look forward to working closely with him over the next 22 months as he assumes this new role and delves deeper into Disney’s multifaceted global businesses and operations, while I continue to focus on the Company’s creative endeavors.”
Bob Chapek has been with Disney since 1993 and has worked in their Home Entertainment division before transitioning to Disney Consumers Products. In 2015, Chapek became the Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts and in 2018, he became the head of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products.
Chapek’s replacement at Disney Parks, Experiences and Products is set to be named in the future.
Iger added: “Bob will be the seventh CEO in Disney’s nearly 100-year history, and he has proven himself exceptionally qualified to lead the Company into its next century. Throughout his career, Bob has led with integrity and conviction, always respecting Disney’s rich legacy while at the same time taking smart, innovative risks for the future. His success over the past 27 years reflects his visionary leadership and the strong business growth and stellar results he has consistently achieved in his roles at Parks, Consumer Products and the Studio. Under Bob’s leadership as CEO, our portfolio of great businesses and our amazing and talented people will continue to serve the Company and its shareholders well for years to come.”
Since becoming CEO in 2005, Iger’s legacy has included the acquisitions of Pixar in 2006 (for $7.4 billion), Marvel Entertainment in 2009 (for $4 billion), Lucasfilm in 2012 (for $4 billion) and most recently 21st Century Fox in 2019 (for $71 billion).
With these acquisitions, Disney has become a powerhouse at the box office with an more than $22 billion from the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
“I am incredibly honored and humbled to assume the role of CEO of what I truly believe is the greatest company in the world, and to lead our exceptionally talented and dedicated cast members and employees,” Bob Chapek said. “Bob Iger has built Disney into the most admired and successful media and entertainment company, and I have been lucky to enjoy a front-row seat as a member of his leadership team. I share his commitment to creative excellence, technological innovation and international expansion, and I will continue to embrace these same strategic pillars going forward. Everything we have achieved thus far serves as a solid foundation for further creative storytelling, bold innovation and thoughtful risk-taking.”
Bob Iger will continue to serve as the company’s Executive Chairman and help direct Disney’s creative endeavors. He will continue this role until the end of his contract on December 31st, 2021.