As of 12:02 am ET Wednesday morning, The Walt Disney Company officially owns of 21st Century Fox. One of the biggest acquisitions in the history of the entertainment industry is now complete. What impact this will have on the future of the entertainment industry remains to be seen; however, the fact that two of the largest production companies in Hollywood are now one will certainly shift the landscape to some extent.
As geeks, many of us are excited about this merger completing. Not because we’re focused on the business and financial news of the day, but because it means that the properties we love are “coming home.” We are focused on how Marvel Studios will introduce X-Men and Fantastic Four characters into the MCU. But if you’ve ever been part of a merger like this, you know that seeing Doctor Doom fighting the Avengers is probably the last thing on the minds of many Fox employees.
Variety is reporting that Disney’s CEO, Bob Iger marked the occasion with a company-wide memo to employees discussing the challenges that lie ahead. He obviously understands this stating, “I wish I could tell you that the hardest part is behind us…”
You can read the memo in full below.
I’m proud to announce the acquisition is complete and 21st Century Fox is now part of the Walt Disney Company. I’d like to welcome our new colleagues, and thank employees on both sides of the deal for your patience and perseverance as we worked through the lengthy acquisition and regulatory process.
As you know, Disney has never been short on ambition. We’ve never been satisfied with the status quo, and our vision for this transformative era is our boldest yet. We are rapidly transforming our company to take full advantage of evolving consumer trends and emerging technology in order to thrive in this new and exciting time.
Our acquisition of 21st Century Fox was driven by our strong belief that the addition of these great businesses, brands, franchises and talent will allow us to move faster, reach farther and aim higher, especially when it comes to building direct connections with consumers.
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.
We’ve spent the past year exploring the new opportunities and synergies generated by bringing our two legendary companies together. Leaders across both organizations have worked closely together to understand how to best unlock this potential and unleash innovation and creativity to generate long-term growth. We’re confident in our integration strategy and in our ability to execute it effectively; and we’re inspired and energized by the new possibilities.
Our integration process will be an evolution, with some businesses impacted more than others. We’ve made many critical decisions already, but some areas still require further evaluation. We may not have answers to all of your questions at this moment but we understand how vital information is, and we’re committed to moving as quickly as possible to provide clarity regarding how your role may be impacted.
Having been on both sides of numerous acquisitions during my career, I have deep appreciation for how this one impacts everyone involved, on both a personal and professional level. I understand the challenges, and I ask for your continued patience in the days to come as we combine this collection of great assets to create the world’s premier entertainment company.