After acquiring 20th Century Fox, it started to feel like Disney owned...well...everything. With the release of Endgame breaking records, A Star Wars movie coming at Christmas, and the Spider-Man sequel AND Toy Story 4 coming this summer, it's never been a better time to own Disney stock.
And that's to say nothing of Disney+, which bundles Hulu, ESPN, and requires a multi-year commitment from subscribers. The Disney Channel and ABC Family still airs on basic cable TV, which allows Walt Disney studios to conquer not only the box office and Disney parks but also generic airwaves.
Since Disney's acquisitions of 21st Century Fox, Buena Vista, and National Geographic, Mickey Mouse has been very busy expanding their Walt Disney television offers and joint venture of parks and resorts.
But it can be hard to imagine just how humungous Disney's reach has become in recent years. We stumbled upon this Infographic from TitleMax that captures all of the assets Disney owns worldwide (click here to ZOOM).
After the infographic, we'll break down some of this into other specifics.
What Companies Does Disney Own?Credit: Title Max
Companies owned by Disney
Does Disney own ABC? You better believe they do. Does Disney own Hulu and ESPN? Yes. And a whole lot more. When it comes to what streaming services does Disney own, the list is very long.
Here's an aggregated list of what Disney actually owns.
- ESPN (80% stake)
- Touchstone Pictures
- A&E (50% equity holding with Hearst Corporation)
- The History Channel (50% equity holding with Hearst Corporation)
- Lifetime (50% equity holding with Hearst Corporation)
- Hollywood Records
- Vice Media (10% stake)
- Core Publishing
What about the Disney brands?
Disney has been smart about acquiring many valuable properties over the years and turning them into Disney brands. This category also covers what does Disney+ own, because most of these have exclusive tabs on the streaming site.
This is an adjusted list of the franchises owned by Disney:
- Star Wars
- The Muppets
- The Marvel Cinematic Universe (but not the X-Men — yet!)
- Disney Princesses/Princes (such as characters from Cinderella, Mulan, Frozen, Aladdin, and The Lion King)
- The Chronicles of Narnia Franchise
- The Pirates of the Caribbean Franchise
- Pixar Films (such as Toy Story, The Incredibles, and Cars)
- The Winnie the Pooh Franchise
- The Indiana Jones Franchise
- Grey’s Anatomy (and other popular ABC shows)
I love visualizing how insane it is that Disney owns this much stuff. Just in entertainment, the ownership of ESPN, ABC, Fox, Pixar, LucasFilm, FX, Marvel, among others is an insane idea. But that doesn't even begin to be the tip of the iceberg. Because included with all those catalogs are all their affiliates and programs. And all the rights of everything purchased since each of those companies existed.
How Many Companies Does Disney Own?
Oh boy... the list of companies Disney owns is long and the number is high. We won't take the time here to list all the Disney subsidiaries.
Why? Because the entire list of assets is just too endless.
Think about the fact that ESPN is its own massive company, just like each individual theme park, and each hotel at each theme park. Or the cruise line. Or the ABC television network.
Who Owns Disney?
The Walt Disney Company's current chairman and CEO is Bob Iger. In 2005 Roy E. Disney (son of original founder Roy O. Disney and nephew of Roy's brother Walt Disney himself) began a shake-up as a 1% owner of the company, and a director emeritus. Roy started a "save Disney" campaign, much as he had in 1984, that would result in the ousting of one CEO and the naming of a new one.
In the recent case of 2005, it was Michael Eisner who'd be ousted and Bob Iger who'd replace him.
As CEO Iger has presided over an era that saw Disney expand its success and reach in large part through massive acquisitions. The question "what does Disney own" probably wouldn't have been asked as often prior to what happened next.
Does Disney own Pixar? Yes. Does Disney own Marvel? Yes. And guess what - Disney owns ESPN.
Those moves led to arguably the biggest one... when Disney bought Lucasfilm and Star Wars.
All of this set Disney on its new path, one that now includes the aforementioned Disney+ streaming network and host of new content based on their IP, but also plenty of classics that they can keep away from any competing platform.
Disney bought 20th Century Fox, which brought with it a whole library of classic movies, and subsidiaries.
But there are still things Disney doesn't own. Like Spider-man! Sony and Warner Brothers still have some IP they've kept away from Disney. The question is for how long?
How Massive is Disney?
Now that you know what TV channels does Disney own, you can understand the breadth of the company. The conglomerate employs 210,000 people. The revenue for 2018 was in the ballpark of $60 billion. That's just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to asking "How much does Disney own?"
It's hard to wrap one's mind around just how big The Walt Disney Company is, and how it seems to only be gaining momentum. This kind of power will shape all of the media for the next century. All the companies Disney owns helps the house of mouse gain power across the world. And we've barely covered every company Disney owns because they also branch out into other businesses as well.
But guess what?
It all started with a frustrated cartoonist and a single idea for a story.