Tom Staggs is Leaving Disney

Edited: April 4, 2016, 3:12 PM

Disney's chief operating officer Thomas Staggs will leave the position on May 6, according to a statement Monday.

He will stay on through the current fiscal year as a special adviser to CEO Bob Iger, the company said.

From the New York Times:

Over the last year, as Mr. Staggs came under intense scrutiny by Disney’s board, it became clear that at least some board members were not convinced that Mr. Staggs, 55, had the skills required to maintain Disney’s creative momentum. Mr. Staggs and Disney mutually decided to part ways.

Earlier: Disney Names Tom Staggs COO, Putting Him in Line to Succeed Bob Iger

Replies (26)

April 4, 2016, 2:52 PM

Sounds like he was cut.

April 4, 2016, 2:58 PM

Sounds like Mr. Iger wants to stick around until after the fiftieth (2021). Staggs' buy out must be monstrous -- we're talkin' "Bob Niles money."

April 4, 2016, 3:09 PM

No confidence vote from BOD. 26 months left on his contract. That's nothing money to a big corporation. They do it all the time to executives when they want someone to leave. This was not a planned career move by Staggs.

April 4, 2016, 3:21 PM

My apologies. I did not realize that you had access to the kind of information that will allow you to draw such an informed and confident conclusion.

April 4, 2016, 3:30 PM

It's called common sense.

April 4, 2016, 3:31 PM

So who is up next?

April 4, 2016, 4:44 PM

So do you think Tom is doing a #ThanksShanghai?

Edited: April 4, 2016, 9:23 PM

Why would it not sound like a no confidence vote? Rising to the number 2 position is equivalent to a CEO position in a smaller company. He will bounce back easily.

Edited: April 4, 2016, 9:28 PM

I'd like to nominate TH Creative and Robert Niles for the position...

April 5, 2016, 8:11 AM

He was probably trying to move too fast and build a new attraction in less than 4 years, There is no way Disney would have any of that nonsense.....

April 5, 2016, 8:15 AM

Brian; LOL So funny.

April 5, 2016, 5:02 PM


April 7, 2016, 12:21 PM

Reading more chatter in the business media that Mr. Staggs was not so much "cut" but rather walked away when the board would not offer guarantees that he would be picked to be CEO.

Reuters: "A source with knowledge of the situation said Staggs, 55, had learned the board was going to broaden its search for a new leader, and that both parties mutually decided he would step down. The source requested anonymity because the reasons for the move have not been announced.

Disney said in a statement on Monday that the board aimed to evaluate a "robust slate of candidates."

Staggs was promoted to chief operating officer in February 2015, after heading Disney's theme parks and resorts. While Disney never referred to him as the heir apparent, his move into the No. 2 job put him in the lead to succeed Iger. Chief Financial Officer Jay Rasulo, who had been seen as Stagg's chief rival for the top position, said last June that he would step down."

April 7, 2016, 12:24 PM

My current favorite comment comes from Laura Martin, an analyst with Needham & Co. who kicked around the idea that Disney could re-hire former Disney executive Steve Burke, currently the CEO of Comcast's NBCUniversal.

Oh that would be RICH!

Edited: April 7, 2016, 12:32 PM

Rudimentary search. Totally random.

Steve Burke (Comcast) salary: $30.1 million

Robert Iger (Disney): $46.5 million

Disney could make Burke one HELL of an offer.

April 7, 2016, 12:43 PM

What a mess. It appears the Disney board wasn't satisfied with Staggs, but the weirdness is they won't find an adequate replacement until the executives are successful in another position.

"both parties mutually decided he would step down"

It sounds like they didn't fight to keep him around. "I'm going" "Okay".

April 7, 2016, 12:47 PM

Names being kicked around (besides Steve Burke): Peter Chernin (former NewsCorps, Sheryl Sandberg, (COO Facebook), Chase Carey (21st Century Fox), Les Moonves (what?!) .... but my favorite one of them all .... Jeffrey Katzenberg!

April 7, 2016, 12:55 PM

Isn't Katzenberg the one driving Dreamworks down the tubes? Not to mention the bad blood between him and Disney could create a thorn in the side.

Edited: April 7, 2016, 1:31 PM

The bad blood was between Eisner and Katzenberg, not Katzenberg and Disney.

If Iger could bring Steve Jobs back into the fold he could molify JK.

April 7, 2016, 1:48 PM

What a coup it would be for Disney to lift Burke.

April 7, 2016, 3:21 PM

I heard Staggs is involved with the Panama Papers... thanks Derek Burgan.

April 7, 2016, 6:24 PM


April 8, 2016, 3:49 AM

@Michael Eisner

April 8, 2016, 7:09 AM

Sure they mutually walked away - Just like Ari Gold was forced out of a movie studio in Entourage... (Some will get this and some will not)

April 8, 2016, 11:13 AM

I think it is about time to unfreeze Walt and bring him back to run his own company.

April 9, 2016, 10:27 AM

Jim Hill said he could be involved with the Panama papers.

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