Former Disney CEO Bob Iger Explains Why He Stepped Down From His Position

The now former Disney CEO discusses moving away from day-to-day operations.


In what was quite a shock on Tuesday evening, Disney CEO Bob Iger stepped down from his position at the company. He will be replaced by Disney's Parks, Experiences and Products chairman Bob Chapek, and the transition will be effective immediately, while Iger finishes out his contract as executive chairman of Disney until December 31, 2021.

During an investor call, Iger spoke about why he's leaving his post, which began when he followed in the footsteps of Michael Eisner in 2005. "As you know, we recently acquired 20th Century Fox, closing the deals sometime in 2019," Iger explained during the call. "The company's gotten larger and more complex in the past 12 months. I should be spending as much time as possible on the creative side of our businesses... With everything falling into place, the time seemed right."

Between the 20th Century Fox buyout, the majority shareholder purchase of Hulu, as well as the launches for ESPN+ and Disney+ streaming services, 2018 and 2019 were immense years for Disney as a company. Iger's tenure with Disney comes to an end in 2021, and the former Disney CEO stated that there is a lot he wanted to accomplish at the company. In order to do so, he wanted to turn day-to-day operation over to Chapek, so Iger can be free to work on the creative side of things.

Chapek has some big shoes to fill, and he is only the seventh CEO in the company's almost 100-year history.

"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," Iger said in a press release. "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."

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