WHEN: Today, Wednesday, August 5th
WHERE: CNBC's "Squawk on the Street"
Following are excerpts from the unofficial transcript of a CNBC EXCLUSIVE interview with The Walt Disney Company Chairman & CEO Bob Iger on CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" (M-F, 9AM-11AM ET) today. Video of the interview is available on CNBC.com.
All references must be sourced to CNBC.
IGER ON ESPN
WE FEEL THAT WE HAVE THE ABILITY WITH THAT BRAND TO DO THAT. WE COULD DO IT TODAY AND THEN IF WE TOOK THE ESPN OUT TO CONSUMERS, I GUARANTEE THERE WOULD BE ENOUGH ROOM TO OUT THERE THAT WOULD BE WILLING TO PAY A HEALTHY ENOUGH PRICE TO MAKE THAT AN EXTREMELY GOOD BUSINESS FOR US AND CREATE SOME OTHER FORMS OF GROWTH, BECAUSE WE ALL KNOW THAT GETTING A CLOSER RELATIONSHIP TO CONSUMERS AND A CLOSER RELATIONSHIP TO ADVERTISERS COULD CREATE GREAT VALUE. I DON'T BELIEVE THAT IT IS THE TIME TO DO THAT.
IGER ON ESPN AS A BRAND
IT IS A MUST-HAVE BRAND. IT IS VITAL TO CURRENT DISTRIBUTORS, AND IT IS VITAL TO ANY NEW DISTRIBUTOR THAT COMES INTO THE MARKET PLACE. NOT ONLY IS IT NOT GOING AWAY, BUT IT IS GOING TO CONTINUE TO GROW. AND GIVEN WHAT IS GOING ON WITH TECHNOLOGY, AND THE ABILITY FOR ESPN TO ENAGE MORE DEEPLY WITH FANS, TO REACH MORE PEOPLE, TO ENABLE FANS TO REACH ESPN IN MANY MORE WAYS.
IGER ON BEING BULLISH
WE ARE VERY BULLISH ABOUT OUR CABLE BUSINESS AND WE ARE VERY BULLISH ABOUT ESPN. WE DID WANT TO NOTE THE SUB LOSSES THAT WE HAD SEEN. AND WE ALSO HAVE AN NBA DEAL THAT KICKS IN IN 2017, BUT AFTER 2017, WE BELIEVE ESPN IS GOING TO DELIVER VERY COMPELLING GROWTH FOR THIS COMPANY BECAUSE ITS GREAT PRODUCT, IT'S A GREAT BRAND AND IT IS IN AN INDUSTRY THAT WE ACTUALLY FEEL BULLISH ABOUT.
IGER ON THE BUNDLE
THE BUNDLE IS NOT GOING AWAY. THE BUNDLE IS ACTUALLY STILL RELATIVELY STRONG WHEN YOU LOOK AT IT GIVEN ALL OF THE COMPETITION THAT IS IN THE MARKET PLACE. AND YOU LOOK AT WHAT PERCENTAGE THE BUNDLE REPRESENTS, NOT JUST IN TERMS OF REVENUE, BUT IN TERMS OF HOW PEOPLE WATCH TELEVISION. IT IS STILL THE DOMINANT FORM OF TELEVISION VIEWING IN THE HOME. ESPN IS FORTUNATE THAT IT IS A BRAND THAT WE BELIEVE PORTS WELL TO ANY NEW PLATFORM – WHETHER THAT IS A SMALLER BUNDLE, WHETHER THAT IS AN OVER-THE-TOP PACKAGE OF PROGRAMMING, OR WHETHER IT IS A DIRECT TO CONSUMER BUSINESS.
IGER ON NETFLIX
WE VIEW NETFLIX AS FRIEND, NOT FOE. THERES NO REASON FOR US TO BEAT NETFLIX. WE ACTUALLY ARE TAKING ADVANTAGE OF NETFLIX'S GREAT GROWTH. AND I GUESS MAYBE YOU CAN ARGUE THAT WE HAVE HELPED NETFLIX'S GREAT GROWTH. WE'RE SELLING PRODUCT TO NETFLIX THAT IS OFF NETWORK, ABC AND OTHER NETWORKS. WE'RE FORTUNATE THAT WE HAVE PRODUCT LIKE 'HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER' FOR INSTANCE THAT NETFLIX REALLY COVETS. WE'RE ALSO SELLING OUR MOVIES TO NETFLIX THE OUTPUT DEAL FOR OUR MOVIES KICKS IN AT NETFLIX STARTING WITH OUR 2016 SLATE. AND NETFLIX HAS ALSO COME FORWARD AS AN AGGRESSIVE BUYER OF ORIGINAL PROGRAMMING.
IGER ON BUYBACKS:
OBVIOUSLY OUR DECISION TO BUY OUR STOCK BACK AT A GREATER RATE IN 2016 IS TIED COMPLETELY TO THE CONFIDENCE THAT WE HAVE IN THAT ARRAY OF BUSINESSES IN THOSE BRANDS AND THE FUTURE OF THIS COMPANY GOING FORWARD, EVEN IN A WORLD THAT IS BEING DISRUPTED BY TECHNOLOGY. FOR THE MOST PART, TECHNOLOGY IS PROVING TO BE FRIEND, NOT FOE, TO THIS COMPANY AND THOSE BUSINESSES.
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