May 18, 2020 - Economy & Business

Disney streaming chief Kevin Mayer leaving to become TikTok CEO

Photo: Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney

Kevin Mayer, a Disney veteran who oversaw the company's streaming unit and the launch of Disney+, is leaving the company after 27 years to become the CEO of TikTok, Disney announced Monday.

Why it matters: Mayer will take over as head of TikTok at a pivotal time for the Chinese-owned social networking company. Owned by ByteDance, one of the fastest-growing Chinese tech giants, TikTok has become a formidable social media company over the past year, accruing hundreds of millions of users worldwide.

  • The company's biggest threat to date is regulatory scrutiny, particularly around the way it stores and uses user data.
  • In his new role, Mayer will also serve as COO of ByteDance, where he will oversee global development and corporate functions of the company like sales, marketing and public affairs.

The big picture: Disney stunned the business community in February by naming Disney Parks and Resorts chief Bob Chapek as CEO of the company, replacing longtime CEO Bob Iger. It was unclear at the time what would become of Mayer, who was long considered a favorite of Iger's, after the transition.

Details: In a statement out Monday, Disney says that Rebecca Campbell, a Disney veteran who most recently served as president of Disneyland Resort, has been named chairman of Disney's direct-to-consumer and international division, replacing Mayer.

  • The company also announced that Josh D’Amaro, formerly the president of Walt Disney World Resort, has also been named chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, replacing Chapek.
  • Both leaders will report to Chapek.

This story is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

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