In case anybody was curious, it appears that Disney’s leadership will continue to shut down comments from investors, even when they invest $1 billion into the company.
Earlier this week, the hedge fund Third Point announced that it invested $1 billion into The Walt Disney Company, taking ownership of 0.4% of the multinational conglomerate. And in the wake of this investment move, Third Point’s CEO and chief investment officer, Daniel Loeb, sent a letter to Disney’s CEO Bob Chapek with some suggestions.
According to Fortune,
“Those suggestions included embarking on a cost cutting program, suspending shareholder dividends and integrating streaming service Hulu directly into the Disney+ platform…He also called on Disney to consider spinning sports channel ESPN off into a separate business and carry out a board refresh.”
“Disney’s costs are among the highest in the industry, and we believe Disney significantly underearns relative to its potential,” Loeb said. “This is not meant to single out any current board members, but we believe there are gaps in talent and experience as a group that must be addressed.”
Disney quickly responded to Loeb’s letter defending their board members and dedication to the course they had set.
“We welcome the views of all our investors,” Disney said in a statement shared by Deadline. “As our third quarter results demonstrate, The Walt Disney Company continues to deliver strong financial results powered by world-class storytelling and our unique and highly valuable content creation and distribution ecosystem. Under the leadership of Bob Chapek, the company has delivered this strong performance while navigating the Covid-19 pandemic and its aftermath, including record streaming subscriptions and the reopening of our parks, where we have seen strong revenue and profit growth in our domestic parks business.”
The company also defended the board of directors, describing them as “independent and experienced” with “significant expertise in branded, consumer-facing and technology businesses as well as talent-driven enterprises.”
It should be noted that Disney did report tremendous spending on digital and Theme Park projects while continuing to keep the shareholder dividends in its pandemic-era suspension.
We at Disney Fanatic will continue to update our readers on Disney news and stories as more developments come to light.