Disney CEO Bob Iger will step down as chief executive officer, handing the reins to Disney Parks, Experiences and Products chairman Bob Chapek. Chapek will be the new CEO with immediate effect.
Iger became the face of Disney over the last 15 years. On March 15th, 2005, Disney announced that Iger would succeed longtime CEO Michael Eisner as the company’s sixth CEO. In his first year as CEO, Iger repaired broken relationships with visionaries like former Apple CEO Steve Jobs. He helped Disney acquire Pixar, Marvel Entertainment, Lucasfilm, and 21st Century Fox with profit amounting to $5Trillion.
Ex- CEO Iger will still be keeping a significant role at the company. He will assume the post of executive chairman and direct the company’s “creative endeavours” until his contract ends on Dec. 31, 2021, Disney said.
“The company has gotten larger and more complex just in the recent 12 months,” Iger said on a conference call on Tuesday, citing its purchase of 21st Century Fox and launch of direct-to-consumer services such as Disney+ last year.
“I felt that with the asset bases in place and with our strategy deployed I should be spending as much time as possible on the creative side of our business.”
Chapek, who will be the seventh CEO in the company’s nearly 100-year history, has most recently served as the chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products. Chapek will directly oversee all of Disney’s business segments and corporate functions.
As chairman of Disney theme parks division, Chapek oversaw Disney’s largest business segment, including the opening of Disney’s first theme park and resort in mainland China and the creation of the new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. He joined Disney in 1993.
Shares of Disney, which ended the day down 3.6%, fell another 2.2% after the markets closed.