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Disney has made cuts in its Digital Networks group that houses Maker Studios and other online brands.
The layoffs impacted fewer than 20 people in the group, which is part of Disney’s direct-to-consumer and international division, and were part of an effort to shift resources as the company focuses on the future needs of the business.
Disney Digital Networks was established in 2017 as a subsidiary of Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media with the integration of Maker Studios, the YouTube network that Disney acquired in 2015. At the time of that combination, around 80 people were laid off from that publishing and digital group. Maker is now one component of DDN, which also oversees the development of content for sites like Oh My Disney and Babble. The group is also responsible for The Mickey Mouse Club reboot Club Mickey Mouse.
After the March reorganization that created the direct-to-consumer and international division led by Kevin Mayer, DDN was moved to that group. A few months later, the consumer products and interactive media group, which is set to become a new operating division for parks, experiences and consumer products, went through layoffs that affected a small number of staff but did include some senior executives.
All of these changes come as Disney prepares to complete its $71 billion acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox’s assets. As part of that deal, Fox executives Peter Rice and Dana Walden have secured top roles within Disney’s television group. Meanwhile, Fox film executives Emma Watts, Steve Gilula and Nancy Utley will also make the move to Disney.
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