Major Disney Layoffs Are Coming. It's Being Described As 'A Bloodbath'
In the last couple of months, we’ve seen significant layoffs hit nearly every sector of the economy. And at this point, it’s clear that no company is safe. Even the massive juggernaut that is The Walt Disney Company is planning a huge layoff, about 7,000 jobs, and the cuts are likely to begin soon.
Insiders have spoken to Deadline and revealed that the layoffs are expected to take place in multiple rounds, with the first round looking to happen at the end of next week. The bulk of the layoffs, however, what some are calling the “bloodbath” are set to take place in late April.
There may or may not be a third round of layoffs. Some sources are apparently expecting a round of layoffs between these two. Others think a third round could come after the big one in April, but only if the company deems it necessary. It's unclear whether that means the full 7,000 cuts will be done by April and more could happen if needed, or if the company might ultimately decide to cut fewer jobs.
The layoffs will trim about 3% of Disney's total workforce and from all reports will cover all segments of Disney’s business. Managers responsible for deciding which positions to target for layoffs have reportedly submitted those reports. Now it’s simply a question of thousands of Disney Cast Members waiting to see if they still have a job.
Layoffs have unfortunately been a somewhat regular occurrence at Disney over the years. Layoffs hit the company after the Disney/Fox merger was complete, as numerous positions became redundant. Thousands were laid off from Disney Parks during the pandemic as a result of the closures and limited capacities that were required at the time. However, there's no indication that these previous layoffs will insulate these divisions from what is to come.
Of course, the multiple rounds of layoffs aren’t going to help ease the tension in any meaningful way. Even those who survive round one will continue to wonder what the future might hold for the next month or so. There’s no way to believe anybody is completely safe. When Walt Disney Imagineering saw layoffs a couple of years ago, much of the cutting was done near the top of the organization, as that resulted in more cost savings.
The layoffs are part of a $5.5 billion cost savings plan that newly returned CEO Bob Iger is implementing. We’ve already seen a significant reorganization of the company, with a goal of reducing costs, including the dissolution of the Media and Entertainment Division created by predecessor Bob Chapek. Disney is now divided into three divisions, Entertainment, Parks, Experiences, and Products, and ESPN.
The Walt Disney Company’s annual shareholders meeting is set for April 2, which means, if this information is accurate then the first round of layoffs will be taking place just beforehand. Bob Iger may speak more about them at the meeting in order to give shareholders an idea of the way forward