Disney CEO Bob Iger is open to meeting with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and talks about his return as CEO, and more in a new interview with TIME

Apr 13, 2023 in "The Walt Disney Company"

Posted: Thursday April 13, 2023 1:28pm ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

Disney CEO Bob Iger has been named in the 2023 TIME 100 list of most influential people, and he recently took part in an interview with the publication.

In announcing Iger's inclusion on the TIME 100 list, Mary Barra, CEO of GM and Disney board member, said, "There's a reason Bob remains one of the world's most admired CEOs. He has led landmark acquisitions, championed culture-defining films, launched innovative distribution platforms, and delivered strong financial results, all while never forgetting the people—the employees and the fans—who make it all possible. His return as CEO in 2022 ushered in a new era of transformation and creative excellence for the most magical company on earth."

You can read the full interview with Bob Iger at TIME, but here is a snippet when Iger is asked about the situation with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

I cannot let this interview finish without asking you about the situation in Florida. Did you checkmate Ron DeSantis?

Disney World opened just over 50 years ago. It was the vision and the dream of Walt Disney, probably the most ambitious thing he ever did—turning swampland in Central Florida into a business that employs over 75,000 people, that is visited by tens of millions of people every year, that is a major tourist destination in the United States, and for the state of Florida, that creates huge value for our company and its employees, and for the state of Florida itself. Our sole goal in Florida is to continue creating that value for all those constituencies. All we want is a relationship with the state that enables us to continue to do that. We have the wherewithal and we have the desire to continue to invest there to grow that business so that we can hire more people so that we can increase our attendance, and so that we can basically increase more value for the Walt Disney Company and for the state of Florida. It’s that simple.

Usually, you’re very much a let’s-sit-down-and-get-past-our differences guy, and much less a let’s-go-to-the-mattresses guy. Is there no trying to meet with the governor?

I do not view this as a going-to-mattresses situation for us. If the governor of Florida wants to meet with me to discuss all of this, of course, I would be glad to do that. You know, I’m one that typically has respected our elected officials and the responsibility that they have, and there would be no reason why I wouldn’t do that.

The wide-reaching interview also talks about his return as CEO, the massive cost-saving measures that he is overseeing, the restructuring of the company, and the search for a new CEO.

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RobbiemApr 20, 2023

I think he’s still trying to be president. The ‘willy waving’ battle with Desantis isn’t to do with Disney its about making Bobby I look good to democratic voters. I took him on in florida and won, I can do the same and save the country type narrative He is probably still bitter that Trump trumped him to be president and then Joe led him on and gave him zilch

DisneyJayBamaApr 15, 2023

Look at the man who is killing Disney.

Magic Crush DropApr 15, 2023

Bobert is the big leagues now

Riviera RitaApr 13, 2023

I'd love to be a fly on the wall at that meeting