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Disney CEO Iger will stay through 2021, mandate for 21st Century Fox Deal

Leia Klingel
The Walt Disney Company CEO Robert Iger attends a special screening of Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" at Alice Tully Hall on Monday, March 13, 2017, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Robert Iger, would was likely to leave his post as chairman and CEO of Disney (NYSE:DIS) in July 2019, will now stay on through 2021, a condition required for Disney’s purchase of assets of 21st Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA).

“I made it a condition of the deal that he [Iger] would stay on,” Murdoch told FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo during an interview on “Mornings with Maria.”

On Thursday morning it was announced that Disney would purchase certain 21st Century Fox assets, including Twentieth Century Fox Film and Television studios, along with cable and international TV businesses for $52.4 billion. The transaction has a total value of $66.1 billion, including 21st Century Fox’s debt.

“I’m convinced that this combination, under Bob Iger’s leadership, will be one of the greatest companies in the world,” Murdoch said in a statement, regarding the deal.

Iger has been CEO of The Walt Disney Company since Oct. 2, 2005. During his tenure, Disney’s stock has seen solid performance and the company has expanded its reach through big acquisitions including Lucasfilm, Marvel and Pixar. Disney’s purchase of 21st Century Fox’s assets will be the company’s largest acquisition to date.

Rosecliff CEO Mike Murphy told FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo on “Mornings with Maria” that Disney’s purchase of the 21st Century Fox assets “is actually larger than all of its previous acquisitions combined.”

In March, Disney’s board announced that Iger’s contract was extended to July 2, 2019. Iger’s contract has been extended a few times, but the March extension was seen as the last. Following that extension, speaking at Vanity Fair’s New Establishment Summit about his coming retirement, Iger stated, “This time I mean it.”

Iger’s shoes would not be easy to fill. In a March press release, Orin C. Smith, a director on Disney’s board noted that, “During his tenure, Mr. Iger has created enormous value for shareholders, with total shareholder return of 448%, compared to 144% for the S&P 500, and a dramatic increase in the Company’s market capitalization to $177 billion from $46 billion.”

 

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