Disney’s Q4 earnings report saw the company take some major wins (like 12.1 million subscribers new to Disney+) but also some major losses — including a $1.5 billion loss of DTC, a revenue total ($20.15 billion with earnings of 37 cents per share) that fell short of Wall Street’s projections, and shares that fell 7%, the lowest in two years. In the wake of those earnings, CNBC “Mad Money” host Jim Cramer has a fairly radical suggestion for the corporation — get rid of CEO Bob Chapek.
“Disney, they have ESPN. If we were on ESPN, we would say he’s got to be fired. That’s pretty cut and dry,” Cramer said on CNBC’s business news program “Squawk Box” Wednesday morning. “The losses here are just mind-boggling. When you’re going over the quarter, it’s stunning.”
Cramer joined “Squawk Box” to discuss Disney’s earnings, Meta, and the election with the program’s co-host Andrew Ross Sorkin. During their discussion on Disney, Cramer criticized Chapek for his public response to the losses of the quarter. The CEO’s statement accompanying the Q4 earnings focused mostly on the Disney+ subscription growth, with the CEO seemingly downplaying the losses the company faced.
“Our fourth quarter saw strong subscription growth with the addition of 14.6 million total subscriptions, including 12.1 million Disney+ subscribers,” Chapek said in his statement. “The rapid growth of Disney+ in just three years since launch is a direct result of our strategic decision to invest heavily in creating incredible content and rolling out the service internationally, and we expect our DTC operating losses to narrow going forward and that Disney+ will still achieve profitability in fiscal 2024, assuming we do not see a meaningful shift in the economic climate.”
“The way he handled it, he made it sound like it was a four-star quarter,” Cramer said. “Delusional.”
Chapek is relatively new to the position of CEO at Disney, having taken over at the House of Mouse in 2020 after Bob Iger retired from his 15-year post at the company. That said, the executive has a long history at the company, starting with Disney and serving as the Chairman of Disney Parks for five years. Since taking the top role, Chapek has faced some major turbulence, including a PR crisis early this year after Disney initially refused to take a stand against Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ discriminatory “Don’t Say Gay” bill. That said, Disney is apparently pleased with his leadership, and Chapek isn’t going anywhere regardless of what Cramer thinks: In June, the company’s board of directors renewed his contract for three more years.
Watch Cramer’s segment on “Squawk Box” below.