Just one day after the long-rumored Disney-Fox merger became official, a new report claims that there is the potential for almost half of Fox's 22,000 employees to lose their jobs. A new report from Rich Greenfield, an analyst at BTIG, revealed in a new report that at least 5,000 Fox jobs may be lost, with the potential for upwards of 10,000 jobs to be at stake. The report was entitled "Disney's $2 Billion in Synergies is Good for Jobs #FakeNews," which is a reference to White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who confirmed that President Donald Trump congratulated Fox mogul Rupert Murdoch on the merger, and claimed that the merger, "could be a great thing for jobs." According to Rich Greenfield, that certainly isn't the case. Here's what he had to say in a portion of his report below.
"Disney expects over $2 billion in synergies from the Fox acquisition, with the overwhelming majority of that from cost-savings, meaning job cuts. In order to reduce costs by upwards of $2 billion, we believe Disney will need to cut well-over 5,000 jobs and the number could easily swell toward 10,000 given the high degree of overlap between the two companies around the world."
According to Disney's most recent annual report, the company's global workforce is estimated at 195,000, while another report from MoffettNathanson claims that the cost-saving synergies could actually be upwards of $2.5 billion as the workforce of 20th Century Fox comes into the Disney fold. Disney CEO Bob Iger highlighted these "synergies" in making the announcement yesterday, but suggested that they wouldn't take effect immediately and will rolled out over a longer time frame. Rupert Murdoch, along with his sons Lachlan and James, sent out a memo to their employees, essentially hinting that these layoffs are coming, while trying to ensure them that they will be taken care of, in some way shape or form. Here's an excerpt from that memo below.
"We of course appreciate that change brings uncertainty. While we do not yet know what these future changes will mean for our talented colleagues, we can tell you this: we are deeply committed to finding opportunities for our people as well as ensuring that anyone impacted is well taken care of. As the planning for these transactions gets underway, we will have more information to share with all of you."
That memo also indicated that while the Disney Fox deal has been agreed to by both parties, it will still take anywhere between 12 and 18 months for the transaction to be fully finalized and get regulatory approval, and, until the deal is finalized, 20th Century Fox, "will continue to operate independently" as they do now and there will be no related changes to positions or responsibilities. The integration isn't expected to be fully complete until 2021, so even if these job cuts are coming, at least they aren't coming right away.
This $52 billion merger ($66 billion including debt purchased) has been blasted by the Writers Guild of America and other organizations due to anti-trust concerns, but from a content perspective, many fans are now thrilled that this venture will finally bring the X-Men and Fantastic Four franchises under the same roof as the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which fans have been hoping would happen for years. It also finally puts all the Star Wars movies under one roof, since 20th Century Fox still retained the rights to the very first Star Wars movie, 1977's A New Hope, leading to speculation that the theatrical cuts of the original Star Wars trilogy could finally be released again, at some point in time. You can read more about these potential job cuts at Daedline.