Disney to Cut 7,000 Jobs, Citing Advertising ‘Headwinds’

The move comes in an effort to reduce costs by an estimated $5.5 billion, CEO Bob Iger said

bob iger disney
Disney CEO Bob Iger

Disney CEO Bob Iger said the company would cut 7,000 jobs, about 3% of its global workforce, in an effort to reduce costs Wednesday in an earnings call with analysts discussing the company’s first-quarter results, as the company’s chief financial officer sounded a somber note about the economy.

“While this is necessary to address the challenges we’re facing today, I do not make this decision lightly,” Iger said on the call. “I have enormous respect and appreciation for the talent and dedication of our employees worldwide. And I’m mindful of the personal impact of these changes. On the content side, we expect to deliver approximately $3 billion in savings over the next few years, excluding sports.” The company also plans to cut another $2.5 billion in non-content spending, for a total of $5.5 billion.

Disney reported having 220,000 employees as of October.

Disney CFO Christine McCarthy referred to a “layer of uncertainty” and advertising “headwinds” on the company’s financial outlook. McCarthy also forecasted a “challenging” second quarter for the company’s linear networks.

The company would still spend approximately $30 billion on content this year, McCarthy said, reflecting previous guidance the company had given.

The cost cuts would help Disney declare a “modest” dividend later this year, she added.