For the last few years, the “House of Mouse” can’t seem to stop hemorrhaging money. From raising ticket costs to taking on absurdly structured partnerships, c-suite executives just keep making poor decisions in the hopes of making up for rampant failures as well as the lasting impact of the COVID closures. Yet, each step they take is another in the wrong direction.
Now, a new report from the New York Post claims a new rash of layoffs is set to end the employment of 4,000 people, with the vast majority coming from the ESPN branch. While being spread out over a few weeks, the layoffs are anticipated to make the budget more appeasable in the face of declining ratings.
Adding insult to injury, ESPN chief Jimmy Pitaro has allegedly sent an email to department supervisors and senior staff requesting they assemble a roster of people who are “redundant and disposable.” A move like this lets those being recommended for termination know that this truly is personal and not just business.
While just a building block in Disney CEO Bob Igor’s $5.5 billion budget cuts, the top mouse looks to save face for multiple box office blunders, multi-billion-dollar losses on streaming services, as well as growing unrest with the political climate in Florida. Yet, many wonder if this will be enough. Or will he raise the bar to the 7,000 figure he established back in February?
The scaling back of funding for programming and on-air personalities is a natural transition as the company looks to save face with the liberals who tend to be more heavily involved in mainstream media and the film industry. Marching to the beat of the main drum in town wasn’t what made Disney the powerhouse that it was. Instead, it was being the drum for all others to follow.