Disney works on organizational restructuration, appoints Uday Shankar as the new chairman


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The leadership organization strategy implemented by The Walt Disney Co. appointed Uday Shankar as the chairman, Star and Disney India and president, The Walt Disney Co.  Asia Pacific, on Thursday. Shankar is currently serving as the president of 21st Century Fox, Asia, and chairman of CEO Star India. The direct-to customer and international segments of the company will now be working with consolidated international business units as a part of this integration planning, aligned towards the pending acquisition of 21st Century Fox, Inc.

Last December, The Walt Disney Co. agreed to go forward with the acquisition of Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox Inc. for about $52.4 billion.

Kevin Mayer, chairman of The Walt Disney Company’s direct-to-consumer and international segment said in a statement, “The planned restructuring of our business units outside of the US will result in a stronger, more agile organization, one that is better able to pivot and capitalize on the many opportunities present in today’s fast-changing and increasingly complex global marketplace.” He further said, “Once the acquisition is complete, all three regions will be led by exceptional, highly experienced executives who will combine the best of the best talent from both organizations. This new structure and the outstanding leadership team we’ve put in place are clear demonstrations of our strong commitment to integrating operations and thoughtfully executing our strategic priorities around the globe.

The restructuring of the company aims to allow better and effective management to happen for different assets of the company. It also intends to optimize the resources applied in support of the company’s strategic priorities. The post-acquisition international operating structure and executive management of the direct-to-consumer segment, will include three regions. Rebecca Campbell, currently president, the Walt Disney Company Europe, the Middle East and Africa, will take care of these regions along with Uday Shankar who will who will oversee the Asia Pacific region. She also looks after Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States. Diego Lerner, president, The Walt Disney Company Latin America, will oversee the operations of this region. The three will report to Mayer.

Luke Kang, executive vice president and managing director, Greater China, Japan and Kore, Kylie Watson-Wheeler, managing director, Australia and New Zealand and Chafic Najia, senior vice president and managing director, Middle East, are all a part of the Asia Pacific team and will be reporting to Shankar. There are talks about announcing additional executives joining the three regional leadership teams and the global sales organization in the direct-to-consumer and international segments, in the coming weeks.


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