Eisner's Remarks at Smith Barney Conference

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  01 January 2004
Eisner's Remarks at Smith Barney Conference

"Walt Disney CEO Michael Eisner spoke ...at the Smith Barney Entertainment, Media, and Telecommunications Conference. Eisner emphasized a strong sense of confidence that the management and organization of Disney have with respect to the company's long-term financial growth prospect and their quality of products and employees."

"Eisner concluded with the following remarks:

"We believe that the company's performance in 2003 signaled the beginning of the next major phase of The Walt Disney Company, during which we intend to capitalize on our market-leading array of assets to drive new levels of growth. And it is the beginning of a new Disney, a Disney that is looking forward to growth in this new decade in this new century through technology, through innovation and through prudent use of capital. Our eyes are directed ahead, as we maintain our focus on quality in products, in management and in governance. As we do so, we will continue to measure our success by the financial yardsticks of growth in earnings, growth in cash flow, and increasing returns on our invested capital."

"We are confident that our strategy is correct and our results underscore it is working. We have built solid momentum. We have an organization whose people are committed and energized. We are growing the Walt Disney Company by growing the value of our brands and in so doing growing performance that can drive long-term growth in shareholder value."

"This is why, for all of us at Disney as we begin 2004, when we say "Happy New Year" ... we really mean it.""


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  01 January 2004
You would never guess from that that it used to be an animation studio

It's amazing that these "professional mangers" (in all sectors of industry), can say so much without saying anything at all.
That speech would have worked just as well if you had swapped the company name for "United Airlines" or "BMW"
Kernow bys vykken!!!
  01 January 2004
Yup, I agree. Disney looks to be becoming the next Wal-Mart.

Quote: Our eyes are directed ahead, as we maintain our focus on quality in products, in management and in governance.

Interesting how he completely neglected the creative force behind Disney's "Quality Products". I guess their Management (snicker) is much more important.
Online Portfolio
  01 January 2004
Thats it... As long as this guy is up there, Disney is dead for me. An animated movie is a part of your soul, not a product. Making money from it is just a side effect of telling a story well. This guy is all BS. Too bad that many shareholders like hearing BS.


Animusing Productions
old animation stuff.

  01 January 2004
Eisner is doing his job: maximizing the growth of the Disney company and maximizing the return to investors. Too many artists want him to be a benefactor of the arts, but that is not his job. His job is to create profits for Disney.

Michael Eisner said in the address:
"Perhaps our most stellar long-term example of producing cost-effective entertainment is our TV Animation business. This unit is committed to extending the life of Disney animated franchises by producing direct-to-video sequels and TV series, utilizing less expensive development and production techniques. We have produced a total of 15 animated direct-to-video sequels since 1994. With healthy double-digit returns that sometimes rise to triple digit, these films are expected to contribute profits of more than $1 billion over their lifetime. This enormous value creation does not take into account the fact that the life of these assets are extended in the hearts and minds of consumers, allowing our characters to have continuing merchandise appeal."

Double digit returns? Triple digit? One BILLION dollars in PROFIT? That's a lot of money. With that kind of success, it doesn't surprise me that Eisner is CEO of Disney. It's the reality of the business world.
  01 January 2004
I can't wait for Pixarland or Pixar World.

"The chill of winter is upon us, rendering even the breasts of girlie men hard." -Ahnold the Governator
  01 January 2004
with all this talk of expansion, profits and doing so extremely well, why are they firing everybody? 3 studios shut down within a year does not say growth to me. and if they're now wanting to get into 3d why did they get rid of the secret lab? they had a $100 million studio, got rid of it, outsourced after they got rid of it, and now want to make another? eisner thinks too much about the dollar as it stands now, not the future of the company.
  01 January 2004
I don't think anyone is stating that Eisner isn't a business man. That much is apparent. It's his plan to go about gaining Disney's fortune that seems to be why so many artists seem to be upset with Eisner. Isn't the TV animation division pretty much outsourced companies doing animations for Disney? Maybe that's why they can have so much profit, by cutting the costs of developing by outsourcing to Korea or India.

That may make a whole bunch of sense as far as business is concerned, but let me ask you this, Would Walt Disney have tried to do this? Somehow I don't think so.
Online Portfolio
  01 January 2004
All the direct to video stuff and the TV animation stuff is sent over seas.

No one expects Eisner to stop being a business man. That is what he is and what he was hired to do. But when you lose sight of what created those valuable franchises to begin with can very easily lose those customers you are so eagerly pursuing. I know this may start some s@@t bt Apple is a great example of how a company founded on a certain level of creativity and inovation lost its way and was almost ruined. It was not till Apple got back that creative edge that they became a viable company again. Disney seems to be heading down that same road. Granted it is different in that Disney is a much bigger company with a diverse business portfolio. But they need to be able to maintian and build on what they are known for rather than abandon it or try and turn it into some kind of cookie cutter process just to make money.

"We are the music makers..... and the dreamers of dreams." -Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka

Last edited by Nicodemus : 01 January 2004 at 05:51 PM.
  01 January 2004
Quote: Originally posted by Ryan B
Eisner is doing his job: maximizing the growth of the Disney company and maximizing the return to investors. Too many artists want him to be a benefactor of the arts, but that is not his job. His job is to create profits for Disney.

Disney won't have any new products to make sequals and TV animation for in 10 years. You think people will want to buy Jungle Book 12? I don't think so... I think Eisner basically milking what Disney has done right in the past and not really investing in the company's future. While others leap forward, Disney will die in the animation arena... they can always buy their creativity and just become a publisher... but I doubt they will create anything worth making a sequal for if there aren't any major changes in management.
  01 January 2004
When they eventually release the Jungle Book 5, to a lack luster crowed of 5 year olds who ask their parents "What is this jungle book?" it will become painfully apparent that neglecting their own creative innovation is a drawback.
  01 January 2004
they intend to "capitalise on their market leading array of assets" - read merchandise, crappy straight to video sequels... read sit on their laurels.. sit on their assets.

i simply cannot believe how short sighted him and his fellow businessmen are. this is only deletorious to the brand and to these self same "assets". there's no long term strategy in place, there's no renewal of the brand or company, this is a very literal running into the ground philosophy, especially for those assets.

doesn't eisner have any advisors? or does he just surround himself with yes men? every time i see a business related address from him i shudder for the crass stupidity behind such words and actions, maybe he just needs a new pr team...

as an investor i would have no confidence in disney at this point in time, the only reason to invest is speculative on the removal of eisner, and seeing as that does not seem likely to happen any time soon i would remove all stock & shares in the company and invest elsewhere.

so sad.
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  01 January 2004
Quote: Eisner is doing his job: maximizing the growth of the Disney company and maximizing the return to investors. Too many artists want him to be a benefactor of the arts, but that is not his job. His job is to create profits for Disney.

Well as far as I know they did not have this kind of talk when Disney was not in such troubled waters. Hopefully this will give the chance to another, or more than one company to rise from Disney's ashes.

Oh and if anything I learned in the business world: You want to make money? Then don't even think about money, think about your making a great product or service based on what defines such a great product or service for the market you are in. Money will grow on its back.

Last edited by PhilOsirus : 01 January 2004 at 10:37 PM.
  01 January 2004
that corporate-speak makes me want to puke; i have to listen to that crap at work every day of the week, and it doesn't sound any better coming from someone else.
  01 January 2004
I was disappointed in this thread. From the title I was hoping to read that Eisner was shouting obscenities at a charity dinner or something.

Like any business, it's sole purpose for existing is to make money. I guess you could state that there is an inversely proportional correlation between wealth and artistry; i.e. the richer you are, the worse you must be. Dragonball Z and Pokemon have shown us you don't need artistic skill to become rich, but avoid the temptation! All as starving artists out there must keep creating.
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