Disney Fox Merger complete for $71 Billion

It is official folks, Disney now owns 21st Century Fox or at least a portion of it. There has been a lot of news over the past year about the acquisition of Fox by Disney and lots of hurdles along the way but the Disney Fox merger is official as of March 20th 2019. This was to the tune of $71 billion dollars. There is a lot of speculation of what this means for both companies and what will happen going forth. This is the 4th major merger that Disney has gone through within the past 10 years including Marvel, Lucas Arts, Pixar and now Fox.  This has fueled debate from both sides, for and against the merger and the long term ramifications. One of the biggest things being discussed is how this will benefit Disney when launching its own streaming service, Disney +

With the launch of Disney + later this year, we were informed that Disney would include its entire movie library and will be home to a whole host of new shows including Star wars and Marvel spin offs. However, with the acquisition, we may even see shows like “Masterchef” “Modern Family” or even possibly “The Simpsons”. We will have to wait and see how this plays out in the future.

Potential issues

Staffing changes

Some of the controversy that has surrounded the acquisition of Fox has been two fold, potential for layoffs and creating a monopoly after buying Fox. It is never good when layoffs occur and I do feel bad for the employees that go through this. However, Fox was selling assets anyways and Disney is the one’s who ended up having the highest bid. No matter who the buyer is/was, there would have been layoffs regardless. This was not Disney being spiteful, it’s the unfortunate side of business. And there is always the possibility for there to be other jobs that arise to minimize the job loss.

Photo from 21st Century Fox

Potential for a monopoly

The second is the creation of a Monopoly. This is true that Disney Fox merger will give Disney the majority share of the entertainment industry at around 46%. At 46% this is quite a sizable portion of the industry compared to the other studios, the closest of which is Comcast at 13%. This is not the greatest for diversity at the movie theaters, however it may not be as bad as people are anticipating. With this Disney reported that they will continue some of the work of Fox, such as with Deadpool (who is technically Marvel anyways). But this is likely true for other types of movies as well to diversify the movies released.

The other part that comes into play is movie theaters aren’t going anywhere but streaming services seem to be moving towards taking center stage. With the success of Netflix, a lot of studios are moving to create their own streaming Juggernauts. We started to see this switch when AT&T bought Time Warner in hopes of boosting streaming services and more recently DirecTV now. As you can see this is nothing new to the industry and won’t be the last.

Picture from Disney

There is more of a monopoly issue with ISP starting to buy out studios as there is always the risk throttling speeds for competitor streaming services or other potential issues. I’m not saying we shouldn’t be a little weary of the potential for a monopoly but may not be quite as impactful as we may see in the future. Part of the stipulations of the merger with Fox is that Disney has to sell off Fox Sports as they already own ESPN; one of, if not, their biggest competitors

Moving forward

In a letter that Bob Iger, Disney CEO, put out to his employees, he put forth the challenges ahead and the encouragement of what this means. “I wish I could tell you that the hardest part is behind us: that closing the deal was the finish line, rather than just the next milestone. What lies ahead is the challenging work of uniting our businesses to create a dynamic, global entertainment company with the content, the platforms, and the reach to deliver industry-defining experiences that will engage consumers around the world for generations to come” Bob Iger, Disney’s Chief Executive in letter to employees.

Disney Fox Merger

We will see what comes about with the new Disney Fox merger and how this impacts the entertainment industry as a whole. This will unite almost all of the Marvel universe back under one company and will likely see this play out in the next few years. The quickest impact that I foresee would be with the Disney + streaming service coming this year and being able to expand their content for a wider range of content to appease the entire family.

What are your thoughts about the merger?

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    1. We will see how this plays out and whether Fox continues as its own entity but under the Disney umbrella or is completely absorbed

    1. I cant wait to see how things change over the coming years, I have heard rumor of an entire X-men reboot which I think would be both good and bad.

  1. I heard this was coming, but didn’t know it was finalized. There are so many great movies that are Disney owned, and I can’t wait to see how it goes with having basically everything Marvel under one company.

    1. Marvel moving forward will be a lot more extensive than I think we believe! It should be interesting on how they manage Fox royalties, hopefully as its own continued entity

  2. I really wish Disney would stop buying up other companies. I know it makes sense as a business to do this but they are definitely putting a stop to other creatives putting out better movies.

    1. I can agree to some point but either way Fox was going to be bought, Disney has a better opportunity to put out their work as their is no reports of dissolving the business; similar to Hulu. Comcast would have been worse I think as it is limited in their production comparatively speaking.

  3. I really DO hope they include lots of Marvel shows on their programming lineup.My hubby and I have been bummed with the cancellation of (and our running out of) Daredevil, Luke Cage, and Jessica Jones on Netflix :(…

    1. I hope they are able to bring it back. I’ve read a couple places the Netflix holds some control over the shows for 24 months then maybe able to bring them back. I wouldnt be surprised if they made their way to Hulu as this maybe a little more broad compared to Disney +

  4. I don’t think this will mean a huge change in staff and productions, excepts for which pocket the profits go to…

    1. Pretty much, it brings other Intellectual properties which should create new options but I dont think it will be a drastic change in staffing

  5. I had no clue that any of this was going on. I guess I have been in my own little world. This is quite the change!

  6. It’s incredible how big the Disney umbrella is now. I hope it results in great entertainment for its fans.

    1. I do hope that they continue to produce movies through Fox as this keeps a lot more options open

  7. I had no idea that Disney bought 21 Century Fox! Hopefully this will end up being a positive thing in the long run!

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