The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Walt Disney Co, Bob Iger has resigned from Apple Inc’s Board. The resignation came at a time when the two companies are competing in the online TV streaming business. Iger was said to have resigned the same day Apple announced price and release date for its streaming service.
In a statement made available to the public, Iger expressed his appreciation to Apple, having worked with the company for 8 years.
“It has been an extraordinary privilege to have served on the Apple board for 8 years, and I have the utmost respect for Tim Cook, his team at Apple, and for my fellow board members.
“Apple is one of the world’s most admired companies, known for the quality and integrity of its products and its people, and I am forever grateful to have served as a member of the company’s board,” he said.
Although neither Disney nor Apple gave reasons for Iger’s resignation, it is arguable that he resigned because of the conflict of interest that might ensue when the two companies start competing for original contents in the future with the new online TV streaming platforms – Disney+ and Apple TV+.
Other members currently on Apple’s Board of Directors include Chairman Arthur D. Levinson, James A. Bell, Al Gore, Andrea Jung, Ronald Sugar, Susan L. Wagner and of course, the CEO of Apple, Tim Cook.
The Apple and Disney bond: Apple and Disney have long had a strong relationship among major American companies, dating back to when Apple’s co-founder, Steve Jobs became a director and shareholder of Disney. It was shortly after Job’s death in November 2011 that Iger became an Apple director.
Meanwhile, this isn’t the first time that a director is leaving Apple’s board because of competition concerns. In 2009, the then CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt resigned from Apple’s board when it became clear that Google’s Android would directly compete with Apple’s iPhone.