Posted by: Tom Lowry on November 13, 2009
Walt Disney CFO Tom Staggs may soon get some on-the-job experience in another corner of the Mouse House. Disney’s top financial executive is expected to swap jobs with Disney theme park chief Jay Rasulo, according to knowledgeable sources. The swap comes at a crucial time for Disney, which is planning to build a theme park in Shanghai.
No announcement has been made yet, but Disney CEO Bob Iger is expected to describe the swap as a new policy by which he moves longstanding executives into new roles to expand their knowledge of the company.
However, longtime Disney observers say this could buttress Staggs’ chances to contend for a more senior role later on. The 19-year Disney veteran is believed to have wanted for some to become Disney’s chief operating officer, a position that currently doesn’t exist. Disney insiders say Staggs has been keen on that job ever since Iger was elevated to CEO in 2005. Rasulo, who has run the theme parks since 2002, was a highly-regarded strategic planner for Disney and then oversaw the Disney-managed theme park outside Paris before being elevated to his current role. The move is reminiscent of efforts by former Disney CFO Richard Nanula, who switched jobs to run Disney theme parks in the mid-1990s in order to bolster his own bid for a more senior job.
This post is from my colleague Ron Grover who is stuck in Los Angeles traffic