War At Disney Comes To An End
After two years, the battle between the Walt Disney Company and two of its former directors has come to a conclusion. Lawsuits from Stanley P. Gold and Roy Disney, nephew of Walt have been dropped.
The battle that has been raging for the past two years was over the control of the company’s theme park and media business. Now a truce has been declared.
Roy Disney and Mr. Gold have agreed not to submit any new shareholder resolutions, and Roy has been named director emeritus and a consultant to the company. Richard Verrier of the LA Times writes:
The entertainment giant took note of Roy Disney’s “longtime devotion” to the company. Gold and Disney, for their part, expressed confidence in Iger’s (the company’s new CEO) leadership and gave a nod to Eisner’s contributions to the company.
The pact came on the heels of Iger’s dismantling of Disney’s powerful strategic planning department, widely viewed by upper management as Eisner’s tool to exert control over virtually every aspect of the Disney empire. Iger, who was named CEO-elect in March after serving as Eisner’s second-in-command, was applauded inside the company for acting swiftly to resolve a situation that was hurting executive morale.
As part of their agreement with the Walt Disney Company, Mr. Disney and Mr. Gold have also agreed not to run a challenge slate of directors for the next five years.
According to the Associated Press, Disney shares went up 55 cents to $25 on the New York Stock Exchange, and then rose another 50 cents in after-hours trading.