BURBANK, Calif.–The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) Board of Directors announced the
election of two new directors: Safra Catz, Chief Executive Officer of
global-technology leader Oracle Corp., and Francis A. deSouza, President
and Chief Executive Officer of biotechnology firm Illumina Inc. The
elections of Ms. Catz and Mr. deSouza are effective February 1, 2018.
“Safra Catz and Francis deSouza are extremely well-respected in their
fields, and each brings an innovative and valuable perspective to our
business,” said Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer,
The Walt Disney Company. “Ms. Catz has led Oracle through a period of
tremendous growth and innovation since taking the helm in 2014, driving
the company’s impressive acquisition strategy and expanding its
operations. Mr. deSouza has overseen the development of groundbreaking
genomics technology at Illumina that pushes the boundaries of science,
significantly impacting the well-being of people around the world.”
“I am honored to join Disney’s board,” Ms. Catz said. “For almost 100
years, Disney has continued to innovate and deliver an unparalleled
customer experience. As technology and entertainment further converge,
it’s an exciting time for the company and I look forward to working with
the board in continuing Disney’s rich legacy of innovation.”
“It is a privilege to be a part of such an iconic institution,” Mr.
deSouza said. “At both Disney and Illumina, we have very similar goals:
to touch people’s lives. Disney does it through first-class storytelling
and Illumina does it through cutting-edge science.”
Ms. Catz is Chief Executive Officer of Oracle and a member of the
company’s board of directors. She previously served as President of
Oracle and has also served as the company’s Chief Financial Officer. Ms.
Catz was Oracle’s Chief Financial Officer from 2005 to 2008, Executive
Vice President from 1999 to 2004, and a Senior Vice President from April
to October 1999. She was a member of the board of directors for HSBC
Holdings, one of the world’s largest banking and financial services
organizations, from 2008 through 2015.
Mr. deSouza was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of
Illumina in 2016 and is responsible for directing all aspects of the
company’s strategy, planning and operations. He initially joined the
company as President in 2013, and led Illumina’s business units and core
functions responsible for envisioning, developing and producing the
company’s products. He also is a member of the company’s board of
directors. Previously, Mr. deSouza served as President of Products and
Services at Symantec Corp., where he was responsible for driving the
vision for the company’s market-leading portfolio and served in a
variety of executive roles. He joined Symantec through the acquisition
of IMlogic Inc., where he was co-founder and Chief Executive Officer.
About The Walt Disney Company:
The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries, is a
diversified worldwide entertainment company with operations in four
business segments: Media Networks, Parks and Resorts, Studio
Entertainment, and Consumer Products & Interactive Media. Disney is a
Dow 30 company and had annual revenues of $55.1 billion in its Fiscal
Oracle and Java are registered trademarks of Oracle and/or its
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