Once again, analysts are discussing the possibility of Apple and the Walt Disney Company merging despite no official talks occurring.
Despite denials by Apple and Walt Disney Company executives over the years, analysts continue to speculate on the possibility of Apple buying the storied studio. The latest speculation comes from The Hollywood Reporter that there have been some signals that Disney may be preparing itself for a potential sale.
Speculation kicked into high gear when Disney CEO Bob Iger suggested that ABC and FC “may not be core” to the company’s business future. Analysts have been suggesting that if we saw Disney beginning to slim itself down that it would be signaling to Wall Street it was open to a sale.
But why Apple, a company known best for its computers and phones? The relationship between the companies dates back to 2006, when Apple sold Pixar to Disney. Steve Jobs then served on Disney’s Board of Directors until his death in 2011. Iger served on Apple’s board shortly after that until 2019, when the company launched Apple TV Plus.
Iger signaled his interest in the two companies becoming one in his 2019 biography, The Ride of a Lifetime. He said, “I believe that if Steve were still alive, we would have combined our companies, or at least discussed the possibility very seriously.”
While some may see the merger as an obvious choice, there are a lot of legal hurdles for such a deal to take place. It would need to clear both FTC and DOJ approvals in the U.S., and the merger of such companies would be scrutinized harder than almost any deal before it.
Could the two companies talk with one another about the possibility? Of course. But making it actually happen is an entirely different kettle of fish.