The Walt Disney Company today announced that chief executive Bob Iger is stepping down, effective immediately. Bob Chapek has been named the new CEO.
Iger will move into the role of executive chairman and will direct Disney’s creative endeavors along with leading the board through the end of his contract on Dec. 31, 2021.
“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,” said Iger in a statement. “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.”
Chapek, who most recently served as chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, will now oversee all Disney operations and report directly to Iger. Chapek has been with Disney since 1993 and has served in other roles including chairman of the Disney Consumer Products segment and president of Distribution for The Walt Disney Studios.
A contract extension for Iger to stay on through 2021 was announced in 2018 when the company announced its $71.3 billion acquisition of Fox. That deal has since closed and Disney has gone onto take full control of Hulu and launch Disney+, which has already 28.6 million paid subscribers.