Imagine the mother of all deals…
Something that would UTTERLY transform the way the world works.
As we all know, Bob Iger is back at Disney (DIS). And while Big Mouse shareholders are hoping the former CEO can bring the magic back to the Magic Kingdom, the company faces tough choices.
At the box office, Marvel has arguably had its box office peak, the Avatar sequel needs to make an incredible amount of money just to break even, and more real life remakes of Disney’s animated classics will hardly sweep the culture.
Disney can squeeze plenty of money out of IP’s such as Star Wars, Marvel, and its own classic characters, but at a certain point, it just becomes cynical and tiresome.
When it comes to theme parks, the on-again, off-again, opening and closing with COVID-19 will pose continuing problems.
Remember, it’s not just theme parks – but Disney’s vast empire of hotels and cruise lines.
Disney is also increasing prices – and with the economy in its present state, few can entertain an expensive vacation to California or Orlando, Florida.
But what if Iger has an ace up his sleeve?
What if he’s toying with the mother of all deals?
What if he’s thinking of selling the company?
Iger has a long history with Apple and rumors are swirling that he may be considering selling Big Mouse to what was, until recently, the world’s most valuable company.
(The most valuable company is now Saudi Arabian Oil Company, but forget about that now.)
It would make sense. It would solve a lot of the difficult decisions both companies need to make about streaming and entertainment – though a deal this big wouldn’t come without risk.
One wonders if the “insider” accounts floating this idea are just a trial balloon. After all, it’s by no means clear the government would let it happen…
Antitrust regulators are showing new life in recent years… though the government needs to take care not to throw the economy into an unnecessary recession.
President Biden might have been too clever by half when it comes to the game he’s been playing with organized labor and railway management.
Don’t miss “Mr. X” on the horrific consequences of a potential railway strike.
WORD ON THE STREET
Dems Lead In GA, Twitter Spiraling, Credit Suisse Plummets
- An Unfortunate Gaffe – Incumbent Senator Raphael Warnock enjoys a four point lead over GOP nominee Herschel Walker in the upcoming runoff election. Walker made an especially NSFW mistake when he said that “this erection is about the people.” No that’s not a typo, that’s what he said.
Credit Suisse Loses $1.6 Billion – Success is having money equivalent to the amount one of the world’s leading lenders can blow in a quarter. Credit Suisse projected a $1.6 billion loss in the fourth quarter. The company is undergoing a massive strategic overhaul.
Twitter Still A “High Risk” Buy For Advertisers – While Elon Musk struggles to build a new business model for Twitter, technical difficulties are mounting. The company’s automated copyright takedown system went down earlier this week and more than half the staff needed to deal with technical failures have left. Musk has announced a second delay for his “$8 a month” verified service feature. Advertisers are still being told buying on Twitter is “high risk” because of the perceived lack of content moderation.
UK Cracks Down On Google, Apple – The United Kingdom’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is investigating whether Apple and Google have too much influence over consumer choice. The authority said the two companies have “an effective duopoly on mobile ecosystems that allows them to exercise a stranglehold over operating systems, app stores, and web browsers on mobile devices.”
HOT SPOTS: What’s Going on in Geopolitics
- Ukraine Faces Humanitarian Disaster – While Russia has shortened its defensive lines, it is not letting up in its offensive against Ukraine’s infrastructure. Russian missile and airstrikes have put Ukraine’s electricity supply under severe strain. About 2 to 3 million Ukrainians are expected to flee their homes this winter in a search for warmth.
Bolsonaro Challenges Election – Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, bolstered by demonstrations from his dedicated followers, is challenging his narrow defeat in the most recent election. He has called for the cancellation of votes from machines that he alleges malfunctioned on election day. Bolsonaro lost to former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in the tightest election in Brazil’s history.
Saudi Arabia Defeats Argentina In Greatest World Cup Upset – At the World Cup in Qatar, Saudi Arabia defeated Argentina 2-1 in what sports data company Gracenote calls the biggest upset in World Cup history. The Argentinian team had been undefeated for three years before its stunning downfall.
CUTTING EDGE: What‘s Happening In Tech
- Zuckerberg Resigning? – Meta Platforms (META) had to take to Twitter to deny reports that founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg was going to resign. META was up more than 1.4%, recovering from a recent losing streak.
Binance Takes A Shot At Coinbase – Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao tweeted out numbers that seemed to call the holdings of Coinbase and Grayscale into question. Zhao deleted the tweet soon afterward, saying the numbers were “wrong” and calling for better “transparency in the industry.” COIN gained more than 5% yesterday, but even with that gain, it’s lost more than 82% of its value this YTD.
- Record COVID In China Threatens Apple – Beijing posted a record number of new COVID cases yesterday, a recipe for disaster under the country’s zero COVID policy. Crackdowns are leading to social tensions. A mass protest of hundreds of workers at an Apple plant in Zhengzhou featured workers clashing with security. So much for the “People’s Republic.”
FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION
“President Biden has been repeatedly underestimated. Let’s hope he’s being underestimated again. A strike would have a bigger impact on the American economy than the Russian invasion of Ukraine.”
It’s an economic disaster that would dwarf everything that’s happened in recent history… and it has President Biden in a political bind.
Mr. X explains why President Joe Biden can’t simply order unions to yield without threatening his coalition… providing an opening for Republicans to reclaim their lead on economic issues.
POTUS may not want to do it, but unless he wants to preside over a recession, he has no choice but to take on labor and force a compromise.
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