Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Robert Iger accepted on Thursday a two-year contract extension through June 2018.
Iger, 63, had been set to retire as head of the Burbank entertainment and media company in June 2016. He also serves as chairman of the board of directors.
Orin C. Smith, the company’s lead director, said the board sought to keep Iger in place based on the studio’s financial and creative success.
“He has transformed Disney's culture and empowered its businesses to effectively capitalize on evolving markets and new technologies, making Disney a company that doesn’t merely embrace change, but leads it,” Smith said in a prepared statement.
Iger became chief executive of Disney in September 2005, succeeding Michael Eisner. He has put Disney content on consumer portals, such as iTunes, and moved ahead with expansion of the company’s resort business. But he has made his biggest mark with the acquisition of the Pixar animation studio in January 2006, Marvel Entertainment in 2009; and LucasFilm Ltd., the owner of the “Star Wars” franchise, in 2012.
“I’m very excited about what lies ahead, including the release of our “Star Wars” films and the launch of Shanghai Disneyland, and I’m honored to continue working with our talented management team and the 175,000 dedicated people who make this company what it is today,” Iger said in a prepared statement.
His salary remains at $2.5 million a year with performance-based retention bonuses for meeting certain performance goals. Last year, his overall compensation slid 15 percent after certain goals were not met, but it still totaled more than $34 million, making him one of the country’s highest compensated executives.
Iger originally announced his retirement as chief executive effective in March 2015 and as board chairman in June 2016. Last year, the board extended the contract so that Iger would step down from both positons in June 2016.
Shares closed down 70 cents, or almost 1 percent, to $86.79 on the New York Stock Exchange.
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