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Former Disney CEO Bob Iger partners with eBay to purchase popular toy company

Disney’s former CEO is broadening his horizons since leaving The Walt Disney Company in December 2021, and it looks like he might have an affinity for Disney toys and collectibles fans often see at Walt Disney World and at shopDisney.

bob iger

Credit: Variety

According to GeekWire, Bob Iger is among a group of investors looking to purchase Washington-based toymaker Funko for $263 million from a consortium headed by The Chernin Group TCG. PayPal is also involved in the group of investors looking to buy the pop culture toy company, as well as Rich Paul, the CEO and founder of Klutch Sports Group. Paul is also the head of sports at United Talent Agency.

Currently, the transaction is a secondary offering.

Funko POP! Town Sleeping Beauty Castle and Walt Disney - Walmart.com

Credit: shopDisney

According to GeekWire:

“TCG, an investment firm with interests in the media, commerce, and technology industries, and the consortium are acquiring from ACON Investments 12,520,559 shares of Funko class A common stock, or 80% of ACON Investments‘ stake in Funko, at $21 per share. The TCG consortium will own 25% of the company following completion of the transaction, the companies announced Thursday.”

TCG also plans to appoint two directors to its board, one of whom is Jesse Jacobs, TCG cofounder and partner. The second director has not yet been announced.

Part of the investment agreement, should it go through, calls for Funko and eBay to enter into a commercial agreement. Per this agreement between the two entities, eBay will become the preferred secondary marketplace for Funko merchandise. The arrangement also calls for collaboration in the creation of exclusive product releases.

File:eBay former logo.svg - Wikimedia Commons

“We believe Funko is significantly undervalued in the public markets and at this highly attractive entry price provides a runway of opportunity and growth potential,” said Peter Chernin, TCG cofounder. “There are many areas of identifiable growth across content, commerce, marketplaces, consumer products, and technology that should drive substantial increases to Funko’s performance.”

Funko, which originated in 1998, is known for its unique and sometimes quirky merchandise, inspired by pop culture brands, films, characters, and television. Funko also owns the Loungefly brand, maker of popular backpacks and mini-backpacks featuring characters and films from Disney, PIXAR, Marvel, Star Wars, Universal, and other companies.”

Per the Funko website:

“Funko (NASDAQ: FNKO) is a leading pop culture lifestyle brand. We provide connection to pop culture with a product line that includes vinyl figures, action toys, plush, apparel, board games, housewares, NFTs and accessories. As the world’s largest proprietor of licenses, entertainment enthusiasts display their fandom through the lens of Funko products.

funko snow white

Credit: Funko

The company powers the Loungefly, Funko Games, and Digital Pop! brands, while also offering a large selection of pop culture consumer products through Funko.com, Loungefly.com, FunkoEurope.com, and two retail locations in Everett, Washington and Hollywood, California.”

Disney nuiMOs Disney Parks Food Icons Backpack by Loungefly | shopDisney

Credit: shopDisney

Last week, Funko released its first-quarter earnings report. According to the report, the company had a net sales increase of more than 60% year over year, to $308.3 million. Funko also reported a net income of $14.5 million, an increase of 31% from last year.

About Becky Burkett

Becky's from the Lone Star State and has been writing since she was 10 and encountered her first Disney Park when she was 11. It was love at first Main Street Electrical Parade. Joy is blank lined journals, 0.7 mm pens, and all things Walt, Woody and Buzz, PIXAR, Imagineering, Sleeping Beauty (make it blue!), Disney Parks history and EPCOT. At Disney World, you'll find her croonin' with the birdies at the Enchanted Tiki Room or hangin' with Woody and the gang at Toy Story Land. If you can dream, you really can do it!