Disney CEO Bob Chapek took on the top-tier position within the Walt Disney Company at the start of 2020 just prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. During his time as CEO thus far, Chapek has overseen increased content arriving on Disney’s streaming platforms, changes to merchandising and Disney shopping experiences, and widespread layoffs followed by various stages of reopening to Disney theme parks.
At the start of Chapek’s role as Disney CEO, the executive’s salary was roughly $14.2 million, and in a recent report by the LA Times, Chapek’s year-end salary from fiscal year 2021 came in at $32.5 million. Making up Chapek’s total salary the Times reports, is a $14.3 million bonus, his base pay of $2.5 million, along with a variety of granted stock awards amounting to $10.2 million. In addition, Chapek reported during a company regulatory filing income including $1.36 million from a pension value change and deferred earnings and $310,000 labeled under ‘other compensation.’
Like most companies, the events of 2020 caused some drastic financial changes for nearly every level of employee at the Walt Disney Company, and many of these changes continue to be felt today. Non-equity incentives were passed up by top Disney executives, and some top execs took salary cuts as well, during 2020 when nearly 30,000 Cast Members were furloughed from Disney parks in both Anaheim and Orlando during their closures.
While many Disney Cast Members have since been called back to work, some are still waiting for the call, particularly those working within the entertainment departments as many shows and performances have either not reopened or are running in some modified way for the time being.
As Cast Members began hearing the options for returning to work, Disney executives were not given their full non-equity incentives from 2020, however, they were able to receive additional stock grants and options, which is considered a typical part of their payment plans.
So far, Chapek’s time as Disney CEO has been largely known for his work toward the goals of Disney’s streaming services, which in addition to Disney+ includes bundles with ESPN+ and Hulu+ as well as a variety of international services.
The success of Disney+ began under Bob Iger’s time as Disney CEO, with Iger retiring from the Walt Disney Company at the end of 2021. Though Iger continued to work for Disney after Chapek became CEO in the executive chairman position, Iger has been credited with pushing for a number of successful programs on Disney+ including the Marvel hits, WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.
In terms of a Disney CEO career, we are still very early in Chapek’s time in this role, so we are certainly curious to learn more about where the direction of the company will be going in the future. Like past Disney CEOs, Chapek has a noted interest in using technology to enhance user experiences, both in the theme parks and at home (an example of this is Chapek’s comment that the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser could serve as a model for hotels going forward.)
With so many upcoming projects on the horizon, we are interested in seeing where Chapek’s CEO career takes the company and will keep you updated here at Disney Fanatic as we learn more.