Bob Iger has only been back as Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company for several days, but he is already hard at work to return the company to its former glory. Iger’s predecessor, CEO Bob Chapek, was fired on November 20, after less than three years of questionable business decisions and a series of public missteps.
While many are excited to see Iger return and change Disney, several insiders claim that Iger may consider making the biggest change that he could — selling Disney to another company.
The Wrap spoke to an anonymous Disney insider who used to work with Iger and says that Iger might be considering selling Disney because it would be “the pinnacle deal for the ultimate dealmaker.”
“He’s going to sell the company,” one Disney insider who has worked for Iger predicted. “This is the pinnacle deal for the ultimate dealmaker.”
Iger is well-known for his top-tier dealmaking. During his prior time as CEO with Disney, Iger was responsible for the acquisition of Pixar, LucasFilm, Marvel, and, most recently, 21st Century Fox. Disney is also the majority owner of the massive streaming platform Hulu.
While there are a number of major companies that would certainly be interested in purchasing The Walt Disney Company, there is a reason that Apple is at the top of everyone’s list — mainly Iger’s desire for Disney and Apple to join forces and his regret that they never did while Steve Jobs was in charge. Disney purchased Pixar from Apple in 2006, but the companies never teamed up for a project.
In his autobiography, Iger wrote about his close relationship with former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, even vacationing with Jobs and his wife before Jobs passed away.
Jobs died in 2011, but his successor Tim Cook has publicly stated that Apple is always interested in acquiring companies with big names and strong intellectual properties. If that’s the case, Disney certainly fits the bill.
“We are always looking at companies to buy, we acquire a lot of smaller companies and we’ll continue to do that for IP and to incorporate talent,” Cook said. “We don’t discount something larger if the opportunity presents itself. I’m not going to go through my list with you on this call, but we’re always looking.”
It may seem odd for a tech company like Apple to be interested in purchasing a company like Disney, however, Apple is no longer just phones and computers. Apple has its own streaming platform, Apple TV, and is constantly creating new original programming — both movies and television shows — that is quickly gaining in popularity. So, the company does know how to operate the entertainment side of things.
It is important to note that all of this is speculation, and the Disney CEO has not announced that he is planning to try to sell the company. Neither Disney nor Apple commented on The Wrap’s article.