Bob Iger returned as CEO of Walt Disney Company less than a year after his retirement following a turbulent year at the company.
The board announced Iger's surprising return on Sunday night, adding that CEO Bob Chapek was stepping down from leadership.
BREAKING: House of Mouse announces shocking CEO switch https://t.co/sn7CmOTTN7
— Fox News (@FoxNews) November 21, 2022
"The Board has concluded that as Disney embarks on an increasingly complex period of industry transformation, Bob Iger is uniquely situated to lead the Company through this pivotal period," board Chair Susan Arnold said in a statement, according to Fox Business.
"We thank Bob Chapek for his service to Disney over his long career, including navigating the company through the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic," it added.
Bob Iger has replaced Bob Chapek as Disney’s CEO. https://t.co/mEMhpxnhHA pic.twitter.com/keuPqCeJ0c
— Variety (@Variety) November 21, 2022
The announcement led to a major shock to the media world.
"The shakeup that caught the entertainment industry and Wall Street mostly by surprise was confirmed by Disney's board of directors late Sunday," Variety reported.
"There had been rumblings of a shakeup in the C-suite but the prospect of Iger returning to the CEO job still seemed far-fetched. The turnabout recalls a situation a generation ago at Apple in 1997 when Steve Jobs returned to the helm of the company he co-founded after 12 years in the wilderness. Iger was out of power as CEO for a little under three years," it noted.
The changes come as Disney has struggled in a variety of areas over the past year, including criticisms over its focus on "woke" programming and LGBTQ+ content in a company traditionally known for its entertainment for children.
It's uncertain what turnaround Iger expects in his return to the company, as many of Disney's cultural transitions occurred under his leadership.
Regardless of Iger's plans, it's clear Disney felt pressure for a major change, bringing back its former leader in hopes of financial success.
Source: Fox Business