Still speculation about the purchase of Disney by Apple


In Hollywood and on Wall Street speculations about a possible acquisition of Disney by Apple are renewed. These are licensed, inter alia, by a Hollywood Reporter report, which said Disney CEO Bob Iger may be weighing the once “unthinkable” option. To the Billionaire meeting of media and technology companies in America’s Sun Valley there were appropriate signs. The fundamental question remains, however, whether Apple would have any interest.


Apple and entertainment giant Disney have a special relationship. The Walt Disney Corporation is often one of the first content companies to use the iPhone maker’s new features, most recently those of the Vision Pro, which will be released next spring. Additionally, Disney bought out Pixar in 2006, which had previously been majority-owned by Steve Jobs, meaning the Apple co-founder, who died in 2011, became the mouse company’s largest single shareholder. There have also been rumors in recent years that Apple may force a takeover of Disney as part of its major content plans, but they’ve always fallen apart.

The difference today: Apple has long since become a major film and television machine, spending billions on its TV+ streaming service and producing content relentlessly. Hollywood now takes Apple very seriously. Apple has also recently had some success in the sports rights market, an area in which Disney is also active with its subsidiary ESPN. The Hollywood Reporter quotes a Hollywood veteran who says he doesn’t think Apple would buy the Walt Disney Company as-is. “But when you see that Bob [Iger] starts selling stuff, looks like it’s getting ready to sell. And clearly there is no taker [im Markt] like Apple”.

Disney currently has an enterprise value of just under $160 billion after a major correction on Wall Street. Compared to Apple, which was now at three trillion, that’s almost peanuts. However, the iPhone maker had never supported the strategy of major mergers. The largest single spend to date was headphone and music services company Beats, with a relatively modest $3 billion. In addition, about 60 billion in cash is available. Apple typically buys countless startups for small amounts in the millions, but always knows what it intends to do with them, so their functions are built into planned or existing Apple products, which is often very successful.

Apple blogger John Gruber, considered well-placed in the scene, doesn’t believe in Apple would have an interest in taking over Disney completely. But for Disney itself, no major buyer would be more attractive. The problem is also the special culture, even if there are overlaps between Apple and Disney. The companies have not commented on the speculation. Meanwhile go the crisis at Disney but beyond. This includes the fact that the company has serious problems with its traditional TV business, while streaming platforms are no longer performing as hoped.



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