Walt Disney starts second wave of layoffs, cutting several 1,000s of jobs

Walt Disney will initiate a second phase of job cuts on Monday, which will result in thousands of layoffs as part of its cost-cutting measures to eliminate 7,000 positions and save $5.5 billion, according to a news report by Reuters.
Walt DisneyWalt Disney plans to reduce several thousand jobs by Thursday, bringing the total number of job cuts to 4,000. The job cuts will affect various business segments of Disney, including Disney Entertainment, ESPN, and Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products, but not hourly frontline workers employed at the parks and resorts.

In a memo to staff, co-chairmen of Disney Entertainment, Alan Bergman and Dana Walden, stated that the senior leadership teams have been working hard to define the future of the organization and that getting it right is a bigger priority than getting it done quickly. They also thanked the staff for their patience and understanding during this period of uncertainty.

Disney announced its layoff plan in February along with a reorganization plan to streamline its business and return decision-making to its creative executives. The entertainment industry has been facing challenges since its early adoption of video streaming, leading to significant losses for established media companies when they launched competitors to Netflix.

Following Netflix’s first subscriber loss in a decade in early 2022, media companies began to rein in spending, and Wall Street started prioritizing profitability over subscriber growth.

Disney started notifying employees affected by the job cuts on March 27, with a larger round of layoffs expected in April and a third round anticipated before summer.