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Disney could license content to rivals as part of Iger's new company direction

Seeking Alpha logo Seeking Alpha 2/3/2023

Could the Walt Disney Co. (NYSE:DIS) be on the path toward selling more of its licensed titles to rivals in order to raise cash for the entertainment giant?

That could be in the works, as Chief Executive Bob Iger takes steps to get Disney's (DIS) house in order following a big loss in the company's online video business and a unpopular decisions made by Iger's predecessor, Bob Chapek, whom Disney (DIS) fired last fall.

According to a report from Bloomberg, Disney (DIS) is said to be considering licensing some of it content library to outside media companies and streaming services as it looks for ways to come back from the $1.5B loss its online video business reported in the third quarter of 2022. Such moves would run counter to a strategy that Disney (DIS) has had in place for more than three years, when it began letting third-party content deals with the likes of Netflix (NFLX) expire and consolidating almost all of its massive content library within the Disney+ and Hulu streaming services.

Iger, who came back to Disney (DIS) more than two years after he retired following a 15-year tenures as the company's CEO, has already taken some steps to reorganize areas of Disney's (DIS) management and reporting structure. Iger has hinted that he intends to return more decision making to Disney's (DIS) creative executives, and is expected to give more details of his plans when Disney (DIS) reports its fourth-quarter results on February 8.

Disney (DIS) shares fell by 2% Friday, but are still up by more than 27% since the end of 2022.

Iger and Disney (DIS) are also dealing with a proxy fight from activist investor Trian Fund Management, which is seeking to place its director, Nelson Peltz, on Disney's (DIS) board of directors.

Now read: Netflix: Let's Pause For A Brief Commercial Break


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