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Third Point’s Dan Loeb still loves to Netflix and chill. Or, rather, to Disney+ and chill. In fact, he’d like to do a great deal more of the latter, which is why he’d be comfortable with Disney spending a bit more of his money (now that he’s repurchased a roughly $1 billion stake in the company) to buy Comcast out of Hulu early and just merge it into the aforementioned Disney+ to attract more and more of the ever-increasing pool of cord-cutters. And he thinks it could use some help doing so—help he is ready and willing to provide.

Mr. Loeb’s letter urges Disney to rethink the makeup of its board and consider a list of potential new members that Third Point has compiled.... Third Point would like to see more Disney directors with expertise in the digital-advertising and consumer-data spaces, because that sort of expertise isn’t currently represented on the board, according to a person familiar with the hedge fund’s strategy.

For all we know, Dan Loeb may also like sports. Certainly, he likes them as an entertainment business. It’s just that he thinks it should be its own entertainment business.

“ESPN would have greater flexibility to pursue business initiatives that may be more difficult as part of Disney, such as sports betting,” Loeb said. “We believe that most arrangements between the two companies can be replicated contractually, in the way eBay spun PayPal while continuing to utilize the product to process payments.”/Disney is making more money from cable subscribers than any other company solely because of ESPN.

And that, of course, would help Dan Loeb make more money, something he’s in rather serious need of, his flagship being down almost as much this year as Disney stock.

Hedge fund manager Dan Loeb buys a new stake in Disney and pushes for ESPN spinoff [CNBC]
Dan Loeb’s Third Point Calls for Disney to Spin Off ESPN, Refresh Board [WSJ]

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