Disney buys Pixar

Furthering its strategy of delivering outstanding creative content, The Walt Disney Company has agreed to acquire computer leader Pixar for US$7.4 billion in an all-stock transaction. Under the terms of the agreement, 2.3 Disney shares will be issued for each Pixar share.

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By  Angela Sutherland Published  January 26, 2006

Furthering its strategy of delivering outstanding creative content, The Walt Disney Company has agreed to acquire computer leader Pixar for US$7.4 billion in an all-stock transaction. Under the terms of the agreement, 2.3 Disney shares will be issued for each Pixar share. This acquisition combines Pixar's creative and technological resources with Disney's portfolio of family entertainment, characters, theme parks and other franchises, resulting in vast potential for new landmark creative output and technological innovation that can fuel future growth across Disney's businesses. Garnering an impressive 20 Academy Awards, Pixar's creative team and global box office success have made it a leader in quality family entertainment through incomparable storytelling abilities, creative vision and innovative technical artistry. "With this transaction, we welcome and embrace Pixar's unique culture, which for two decades, has fostered some of the most innovative and successful films in history. The talented Pixar team has delivered outstanding animation coupled with compelling stories and enduring characters that have captivated audiences of all ages worldwide and redefined the genre by setting a new standard of excellence," says Robert A. Iger, president and CEO of Disney. "The addition of Pixar significantly enhances Disney animation, which is a critical creative engine for driving growth across our businesses. This investment significantly advances our strategic priorities, which include - first and foremost - delivering high-quality, compelling creative content to consumers, the application of new technology and global expansion to drive long-term shareholder value," he adds. Pixar president Ed Catmull will serve as president of the new Pixar and Disney animation studios, reporting to Iger and Dick Cook, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios. In addition, Pixar executive vice president John Lasseter will be chief creative officer of the animation studios, as well as principal creative advisor at Walt Disney Imagineering, where he will provide his expertise in the design of new attractions for Disney theme parks around the world, reporting directly to Iger. Pixar chairman and CEO Steve Jobs will be appointed to Disney's board of directors as a non-independent member. With the addition of Jobs, 11 of Disney's 14 directors will be independent. Both Disney and Pixar animation units will retain their current operations and locations. "Disney and Pixar can now collaborate without the barriers that come from two different companies with two different sets of shareholders," said Jobs. "Now, everyone can focus on what is most important, creating innovative stories, characters and films that delight millions of people around the world." "Pixar's culture of collaboration and innovation has its roots in Disney Animation. Our story and production processes are derivatives of the Walt Disney 'school' of animated filmmaking," says Dr. Catmull. "Just like the Disney classics, Pixar's films are made for family audiences the world over and, most importantly, for the child in everyone. We can think of nothing better for us than to continue to make great movies with Disney."

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