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Disney Delivers Strategy 2000

Disney's CEO Michael Eisner delivered a four-part strategy for improving

the entertainment giant's slumping fiscal achievements. The Y2K plan

includes agressively attacking trouble spots, squeezing more profits out of

exsisting businesses, expanding those current businesses' affairs and

continuing development of new products. The seemingly Business 101 strategy

also includes annual savings of up to $300 million from changes in

purchasing. Eisner said cost-cutting efforts in live-action film production

trimmed investment by $400 million last year, and another $100 million in

savings is expected this year. Nonetheless, simplicity works, as

shareholders agreed with Eisner making shares rise 13/16 to 32-7/16 on the

New York Stock Exchange the day of the announcement. Some of the company's

upcoming opportunities may have perked investors ears also. Disney may get

a boost from the opening of new theme parks -- Disney's California

Adventure in 2001, DisneySea in Tokyo in 2001 and Disney Studios' theme

park at Disneyland Paris in 2002. In addition, Disney's plans to expand its

Internet presence, based in part on its film library and news and sports

assets. Eisner said Disney was especially relying on the growth of theme

parks, the Internet initiative and upcoming feature films like DINOSAUR,

KINGDOM OF THE SUN and ATLANTIS. The down year also resulted in Mickey not

giving Mikey Eisner and other top Mouse House execs their year end bonuses.

Mr. Eisner will have to get by on his US$750,000 salary this year, for he

will not get $5 million like last year or the $9.9 million he recieved the

year prior.

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Rick DeMott
Animation World Network
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