Disney creates new structure to boost its streaming business

The Walt Disney Company announced a new organizational structure, which it called ‘Media and Entertainment Distribution’, whose purpose is to enhance the company’s streaming business and place it as a central point of Disney’s strategy. The announcement took place just over a month after the launch of Disney+, the company’s new SVOD OTT, in Latin America.

‘Given the incredible success of Disney+ and our plans to accelerate our direct-to-consumer business, we are strategically positioning our company to more effectively support our growth strategy and increase shareholder value’, said Bob Chapek, CEO at The Walt Disney Company. ‘Managing content creation distinct from distribution will allow us to be more effective and nimble in making the content consumers want most, delivered in the way they prefer to consume it. Our creative teams will concentrate on what they do best—making world-class, franchise-based content—while our newly centralised global distribution team will focus on delivering and monetising that content in the most optimal way across all platforms, including Disney+, Hulu, ESPN+ and the coming Star international streaming service’, added the executive.

As part of the new structure, Kareem Daniel has been appointed Chairman of Media and Entertainment Distribution, and will report directly to Bob Chapek. In turn, Rebecca Campbell was appointed Chairman of International Operations and Direct to Consumer. The executive will report to Daniel on her responsibilities at Disney +, Hulu and ESPN +, and to Chapek in general international operations.

Alan F. Horn and Alan Bergman will serve as Content Chairman for the studios, focusing on branded theatrical and episodic content based on the company’s franchises for theatrical shows, Disney+ and other streaming services of the company. The group includes The Walt Disney Studios, including Disney live action and Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, 20th Century Studios, and Searchlight Pictures. As General Entertainment Content Chairman, Peter Rice will focus all efforts around original long-form and general entertainment content episodes for the company’s streaming platforms. The group will include 20th Television, ABC Signature and Touchstone Television; ABC News; Disney Channels; Freeform; FX; and National Geographic. James Pitaro will serve as Chairman of ESPN and Sports Content. The four executives will also report directly to Chapek.