Disney is preparing to lay off 4,000 employees, and it has been reported that many of those layoffs will be at its ESPN cable sports network and its other side entertainment divisions. And insiders say no one is safe.
According to the New York Post, the list of layoffs is set to be completed sometime over the next few weeks.
Insiders have leaked information about an initial wave of layoffs to affect the jobs of some 4,000 employees. But Disney CEO Bob Iger was talking about 7,000 total layoffs in February, Breitbart News reported.
ESPN chief Jimmy Pitaro has sent down a memo to department heads to assemble their lists of employees that are deemed “redundant and disposable.”
Disney is set to eliminate the jobs as part of CEO Bob Iger’s $5.5 billion budget cut plan as the company faces repeated box office bombs, billions in losses over its streaming service, and political setbacks due to its radical left-wing policies in Florida.
The layoffs are set despite the company’s reported profits of $23.51 billion, which slightly exceeded expectations of $23.44 billion.
It was also reported that the company is scaling back spending on new programming and marketing.
ESPN staffers have also been told that all cost-saving measures are on the table, and no one’s job is safe, with the most vulnerable being the on-air personalities.
In any case, the coming layoffs will likely be far worse than the 2017 round of layoffs that were said to be a “blood bath” when 100, mostly camera-facing employees were trimmed.
There have been more extensive layoffs since then, too. In 2015, the company dumped 350 workers, and in 2020 the company released 300 workers.
Last year it was reported that ESPN lost another 10 percent of its subscribers and was down 8 million customers since 2020.
Iger has said that Disney plans to remove ESPN from cable and go “direct to consumer” sometime in the future, but no timetable has been set for that switchover.
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