November 21, 2022
A day after CEO Bob Chapek’s surprise ouster as CEO of The Walt Disney Co. and Bob Iger’s return to the top management spot he vacated in February 202, Chapek’s first lieutenant Kareem Daniel, also left the company after more than 10 years. His departure was announced Nov. 21 in a staff memo from Iger.
Daniel, who was chairperson of Chapek’s reorganized Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution (DMED) group, was previously head of consumer products, games and publishing at the media giant — as well as Disney’s highest-ranking Black executive.
In the memo, Iger said DMED, which was in charge of Disney+, ESPN+, Hulu, and Hulu + Live TV, would be reorganized by current senior executives Dana Walden, chairman of Disney General Entertainment; Alan Bergman, chairman, Disney Studios Content; Jimmy Pitaro, president of ESPN; and CFO Christine McCarthy to create a new structure that he said, “puts more decision-making back in the hands of our creative teams and rationalizes costs.”
“Without question, elements of DMED will remain, but I fundamentally believe that storytelling is what fuels this company, and it belongs at the center of how we organize our businesses,” Iger wrote.
Industry scuttlebutt suggests Iger will dismantle other Chapek changes, which saw former amusement parks executives aligned with the now departed CEO figure prominently in the company’s direct-to-consumer business unit.