Amazon In Talks to Become Major Disney Player

Disney Amazon ESPN Partnership

A lot of things have changed in the television world in a very short amount of time. For decades, cable programming was the main way to watch our favorite television shows. Now, many people have ditched cable for streaming services like Hulu, YouTube TV, Paramount+, and more. This extreme change has left production companies like Disney wondering what to do. Disney owns networks like ABC, FreeForm, FX, and more.

ABC News

Credit: ABC

Disney CEO Bob Iger recently said that linear TV is no longer at the heart of Disney’s television programming. Reports are even indicating that he is considering selling off those parts of the company. There are several contenders who may be interested in partnering with Disney to help ease the burden of the networks, including Apple and the Blackstone Group.

disney apple merger

Credit: Disney

Iger also revealed that the company is actively searching for a “strategic partner” to help run ESPN. ESPN has been struggling as pay TV bundles are on a steady decline. A strategic partner would help ease the financial burden of ESPN, and also help Disney create new content. A partner would also help with things like distribution, marketing, and technology.

Neither Iger nor anyone else at Disney has been very open about whom the company would look at partnering with. But according to new reports, Disney is in talks with one of the largest companies in the world — Amazon.

Disney ESPN partnership

Credit: ESPN

Per a new report from The Information (via USA Today) Disney and Amazon are in talks to have Amazon buy a minority stake in the company and continue to work with Disney on the ESPN streaming service it is creating. is in early talks with Walt Disney Co about working on the streaming version of ESPN it is developing, while possibly also taking a minority stake in the sports network, the Information reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Disney and ESPN are still in the midst of determining an appropriate price for the new service, the report said.

ESPN is considering charging between $20 and $35 a month for the new streaming service, which could make it the most expensive streaming service in the U.S, the report added.

Bob Iger

Credit: Disney

Neither Disney nor Amazon has commented on the rumor. However, it is unlikely that they would until the deal is done. They may also comment if there is no deal in the works.

So far, Disney has been struggling with regard to its streaming services. In the last quarter alone, Disney lost more than half a billion dollars on its streaming platform Disney+. Iger said that the company will be more particular in choosing what content they want to produce for the platform. Disney has also been busy purging Disney+ of content that is not making it any money. Iger also said that another price hike will be coming to the ad-free tier of Disney+.

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!

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