Disney Makes Peace With Disney

11 July 2005

The Walt Disney Company's two most trenchant critics, shareholders Roy E Disney (nephew of the eponymous Walt) and Stanley P Gold, have called truce with the Mouse House after years of bitter litigation and infighting.

No-one is saying why the duo have called off their longstanding feud with the company; but one credible explanation is mutual exhaustion following the long war of attrition.

Or, mayhap, a dangling of dollars. More likely yet, an assuaging of egos. Whichever, the war appears to be over.

The dissident duo, both former directors of the company, on Friday suddenly "expressed confidence" in Disney president Robert A Iger, who is slated to succeed ceo Michael D Eisner on September 30. They even "acknowledged [the latter's] contribution to the company over the years".

Furthermore, the peacenik pair agreed to refrain for five years from pushing for new board directors or submitting any shareholder resolutions.

In return, Disney the Corporation mollified Disney the Person by conferring on his ego the nugatory title of 'Director Emeritus' and appointing him as a consultant to the company. It also issued a statement welcoming "the re-establishment of a relationship" with the former rebel and his family.

As one independent analyst, Dennis McAlpine, told USA Today: "This is a smart deal for the company. It takes this burr out of their side. And as for Roy Disney, he wasn't getting anywhere."

Data sourced from USA Today Online; additional content by WARC staff