“The merger of high tech and entertainment seems to have arrived. At an all-day meeting on Jan. 23, Walt Disney’s board of directors agreed to buy Steve Jobs’s Pixar Animation powerhouse for about $7 billion, BusinessWeek Online has learned. Jobs, who’s also chief executive of Apple Computer, would become Disney’s largest shareholder and take a seat on the Disney board, according to sources with knowledge of the deal,” Ronald Grover reports for BusinessWeek.
“The acquisition will usher in a new era in which Disney, with Jobs and Disney CEO Bob Iger allied, could rewrite the rules of how entertainment is distributed digitally via new consumer technologies,” Grover reports. “Additional specifics about the deal aren’t yet clear. And it still must be approved by Pixar’s board of directors, the sources say. Disney’s board approved the transaction with the expectation that it could be announced on Jan. 24. The terms include giving Jobs an estimated 7% stake in Disney and letting Pixar’s top creative executive, John Lasseter, have a key role in advising Disney in creative matters.”
“Whether or how quickly Jobs can push Disney further into digital distribution for films is unclear. But analysts have long predicted that Apple will eventually introduce living room gear to make that more feasible. Many Apple rumor sites have suggested that Jobs & Co. are working on a version of the Mac Mini that would be designed to connect to the TV and could be operated via Apple’s Front Row software and Apple Remote, which are already available on the iMac desktop PC. Such a machine would let customers who download movies via Apple’s iTunes Music Store watch them on their TVs,” Grover reports.
Full article here.
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