×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Disney Merges Its Consumer Products and Interactive Divisions

In an acknowledgment of the increasing dominance of technology, Disney announced Monday that it would combine its consumer products and interactive divisions into a new operation, Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media.

The unit will be run jointly by co-chairs Leslie Ferraro, who was recently promoted to head of consumer products at the entertainment giant, and Jimmy Pitaro, the chief of interactive for the company.

In another sign of his increasingly prominent role at the company, the change was announced by Tom Staggs, who was promoted to COO this year, making him the possible heir apparent to Disney CEO Robert Iger.

“Both Disney Interactive and Disney Consumer Products have a strong track record of connecting people to their favorite stories and characters,” said Staggs. “As technology and digital entertainment continue to evolve, a shared innovation strategy will enable this new segment to create unique and engaging products and experiences that exceed consumers’ expectations.”

The change is designed to streamline operations and share technological expertise across the two divisions as they increasingly work on interactive experiences for customers. “The change will more effectively leverage Disney’s extensive licensing structure and retail relationships across both segments,” the statement said.

Pitaro said the combination would open up “unlimited possibilities” for the company.

“The timing of this announcement could not be better, with both divisions seeing great success in the marketplace with technology-driven initiatives alongside our more traditional lines of business,” Ferraro said.

Staggs also led the presentation earlier in the month when Disney rolled out a new set of interactive devices. The Playmation system features characters and stories from Disney franchises, with consumers able to use the portable toys to engage in a series of adventures, either inside or outside the home.

The first of the Playmation products, arriving in October, will be “Avengers” themed and include an Iron Man glove that will have players following a narrator’s instructions as they complete various missions. Consumers can interact with other players armed with the devices and with characters from the company’s “Avengers” films.

Such innovations will continue into the future under a new team Disney has dubbed DCPI Labs. The company said the innovation unit “will focus on using cutting edge technologies to create new immersive products.” The announcement said that Disney Publishing Worldwide, also continuing to increase its use of technology in storytelling, would report to co-chairs Ferraro and Pitaro.

 

More Biz

  • CBS Studios Exterior

    CBS Credit Union Manager Pleads Guilty to $40 Million Fraud

    The manager of a credit union for CBS employees pleaded guilty in Los Angeles federal court on Monday to a $40 million embezzlement scheme. Edward Rostohar, 62, was arrested in March after the scheme began to unravel. According to prosecutors, he admitted to stealing money from the bank for the last 20 years. Rostohar is [...]

  • Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon - The

    CAA's Packaging Fee Becomes Flashpoint in 'Walking Dead' Litigation

    The issue that is at the heart of the WGA’s present standoff with talent agencies has flared up as a source of tension in the litigation between AMC Networks and Frank Darabont and CAA over profit participation on “The Walking Dead.” The practice of talent agencies receiving packaging fees for helping to assemble the creative [...]

  • Sony Music to Deliver ‘Real Time’

    Sony Music to Deliver ‘Real Time’ Data, Royalty Payments to Artists

    Sony Music today announced two new payment features for its artists — “Real Time Royalties” and “Cash Out” — through its artist portal beginning this fall. 

A memo sent to artists Monday morning and obtained by Variety says  the initiatives will “allow our artists and royalty participants to view and withdraw earnings faster than ever [...]

  • Whitney Houston

    Whitney Houston Estate Plans Hologram Tour, Album, Musical

    In the seven years since Whitney Houston’s death, there has been relatively little of the asset-exploitation that usually follows the passing of a music icon, apart from a smattering of previously unreleased recordings, a pair of harrowing documentaries and a lot of unflattering press. But according to an article in the New York Times, the [...]

  • rocketman-elton-john-costume

    Elton John Biopic 'Rocketman' Taps Lucky Brand Collaboration as Part of Promo Push

    Paramount has set a May 28 release date for its Elton John-inspired clothing collection with retailer Lucky Brand, which celebrates the performer’s iconic style and new biopic, “Rocketman” (see tickets and showtimes here). The limited-edition collaboration arrives in stores three days before the film hits theaters, though it’s available for purchase right now on LuckyBrand.com. [...]

  • Huawei Restricted From Using Google's Android

    Huawei Restricted From Using Google's Android as U.S.-China Tensions Mount

    Google has prevented controversial Chinese tech firm Huawei from accessing the latest versions of the Android mobile phone operating system. The move follows U.S. government attempts to blacklist the Chinese firm. “We are complying with the order and reviewing the implications,” Google sources told news agencies Sunday. “Huawei will only be able to use the [...]

  • ‘Hitsville: The Making of Motown’ Acquired

    ‘Hitsville: The Making of Motown’ Acquired by Showtime for U.S.

    Polygram Entertainment, Universal Music Group’s film and television division, along with Capitol Music Group, Motown Records and Fulwell 73 announced today that “Hitville: The Making of Motown” has been acquired by Showtime for release in North America with plans for a fall premiere, and Altitude for theatrical release in the UK and Ireland. The feature-length [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content