Disney exec becomes adviser as unit reorganized

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) – Walt Disney Co. said that it is reorganizing its strategic planning division and that the unit’s chief will step down from the post to become an adviser to Robert Iger, the media and entertainment giant’s newly named chief executive.

Disney said Friday that Peter Murphy will no longer be chief strategic officer and that it plans to move most of the unit’s responsibilities to the division chiefs, who oversee studio entertainment, parks and resorts, consumer products and media networks.

A smaller group will work on developing the company’s five-year plan and on acquisition projects, Disney said.

This marks the one of the first major initiatives by Iger, who will officially take the reins at Disney from Michael Eisner on Oct. 1.

Murphy, who has worked at Disney (DIS: news, chart, profile) since 1988, will in part advise Iger on long-term strategic and technological trends, the company said.

He was named chief strategic officer in 1998 after overseeing Disney’s acquisition of Capital Cities/ABC Inc.

Calls to Disney were not immediately returned.

Shares of Disney closed down 3 cents to $27.75 on Thursday.

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