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disney - C ASE ffiW THE W A[r D ISNEYC OMPANY1 995 OO9...

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CASE ffiW THE WA[r DISNEY COMPANY 1995 1OO9 "Tbe Walt Disney Company's objectiue (mission) is to be one of the world's leading producers and prouiders of entertainment and information, wsing its portfolio of brands to differentiate its content, seru ices, and consumer prodLtcts." ( http ://home. disney. go.com, 2009) In February 2009, Robert Iger CEO of 'Walt Disney reported that the company's profits had fallen by 32% in what was "likely to be the weakest economy in our lifetime." Just six months earlier, Disney had reported record revenues and profits as the compa- ny's performance had recovered under his leadership after he replaced Michael Eisner as CEO in 2005. How did Iger revive Disney'sperformance,and'uvhat was his strategy to respond to the global economic recession that began in 2008? To answer these ques- tions, we need to examine how Iger reworked Dis- ney's strategy and structure to respond to changing conditions in its environment. ffixsNfrY's ffint;wx hIfi il nq x'sK*rA x Fd rq,'t il N T il ne p] Rg Michael Eisner, Disney's former CEO, continued in the1990s to pursue the same srrategy he had pursued with great success in the 1980s: building Disney's core strengths in the three areas of entertainmentand recreation, motion pictures, and video and consumer products to take advantage of the value of Disney's franchises and brand name. Entertainment and Recreation In the entertainment area, Disney's top managers began by enlarging the size and variety of its themeparks and other entertainment properties. The number of attrac- tions offered at its three Orlando properties-Disney 'World, EPCOT, and Disney. MGM-was continually expanded during the 1990s, although this significantly increased operating costs. Moreover, three water parks were now in operation, together with the Disney Vaca- tion Club, Discovery Island' and the Disney Boardwalk. These properties extended Disney's hotel, restaurant, and shopping empire. In 1995,, Disney announced it would build a $500 million zoological park as its fourth property in Orlando, but it would be a zoo with a differ- ence. Called Disney's "\7ild Animal Kingdom," rhe 500-acre park is larger than any of Disney's parks worldwide. It has three main areas, showcasing live, extinct, and mythical animals. For example, the live animal section of the park features large herds of African animals, such as elephants and giraffes, in natural settings; the extinct section of the park fea- tures Disney's famous moving models (animatron- ics) of creatures such as dinosaurs and flying hzards; and the mythical section features creatures such as This casewas prepared by Gareth R. Jones, Texas A&M University. Copyright O 2009 bv Gareth R..Jones. All rights reservedl not to be copied or reproduced in any manner, physical or electronic, without the permission of the author.
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