The following is a statement by Ike Perlmutter, former Chairman of Marvel Entertainment and the largest individual shareholder of The Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) explaining the reason he believes he ended his working relationship with the company on March 29, 2023.
“I have long expected that my working relationship with Disney would end. That it should come as a result of my trying to help Disney improve its business should sadden many shareholders as it does me, the company’s largest individual shareholder. Despite my employment termination, I will continue to hold my shares of Disney and continue to seek improvements at the company for the benefit of all stakeholders.
“Anyone who knows me is well aware of my fixation on fiscal discipline to improve efficiency. It is that approach to Disney's operations that has formed my support for Trian, in seeking to restore the dividend, fix the company's inflated cost structure, and ensure a successful CEO succession. Trian CEO Nelson Peltz has a long history of improving shareholder returns at many leading consumer businesses. I believe he could have done the same for Disney as a member of its board. It’s a disappointment for me and I believe many fellow shareholders that he wasn’t welcomed to the board and that it took the threat of a proxy contest for the board and management to begin to act.
“My ties to Disney are deep and extend more than 30 years. The Marvel brand which I brought to the company in 2009 is now one of the strongest and most profitable business units in the company, as well as one of the best-known entertainment franchises in the world.
“I wish only the very best for Disney stakeholders – its employees around the world, its millions of devoted fans and customers, its brilliant creators and contributors, and its many shareholders, like me. I will continue to advocate for actions that secure Disney’s long-term financial health and allow a new generation of management to reverse the trend of falling shareholder equity and return the dividend to its prior level.”