Disney CEO Iger on Fox deal: 'The risk was well worth taking on'

  • Disney announced the $52.4 billion all-stock deal to buy much of Twenty-First Century Fox's assets on Thursday.
  • Iger will remain as chairman and CEO of the company through 2021 to oversee the merging of assets.

Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger said Thursday the now official acquisition of much of Twenty-First Century Fox assets was "well worth" taking on some associated risk.

Iger conceded the deal came with certain risks — a high price tag and the potential for an antitrust fight — but told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" "that risk was well worth taking on."

Disney announced Thursday the long-anticipated, $52.4 billion all-stock deal that includes some, but not all, of Fox's content assets.

Iger said he was counting on antitrust regulators to look at the deal with the consumer in mind.

"We think that this is very consumer friendly," he said. "The aim of this combined company is to create even more high quality content and then to distribute it in ways that consumers prefer and consumers demand in today's world."

Disney is buying Fox's movie studios, network Nat Geo, Asian pay-TV operator Star TV, stakes in Sky and Hulu and regional sports networks.

Iger said Fox's "stellar" assets and global reach offer Disney a better chance of "contending with disruption."

Earlier Thursday, Iger told "Good Morning America" he doesn't expect the new combined company — and its forthcoming streaming service — to reach the scale of Netflix right away, but aims to be a major competitor.

--CNBC's Michelle Castillo contributed to this report.