Business Case Studies, Mergers, Acquisitions and Takeovers Case Study, Disney-McDonald's,On the Parting Ways

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Mergers, Acquisitions and Takeovers Case Study

Case Title:

Disney-McDonald's: On the Parting Ways

Publication Year : 2007

Authors: Sandhya Hotchandani, Joel Sarosh Thadamalla

Industry: Entertainment


Case Code: MAA0105A

Teaching Note: Available

Structured Assignment: Available

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The entertainment giant Walt Disney and the largest fast food chain McDonald’s Corporation had announced the biggest marketing deal in 1996. For 10 years, Disney and McDonald’s appeared to have the perfect alliance where Happy Meals of McDonald’s accompanied Disney’s movie based toys. The exclusive marketing pact fetched good benefits to both Disney and McDonald’s. However, In May, 2006 Disney and McDonald’s announced to discontinue with the marketing alliance, which expired on January 1, 2007. The decision to discontinue the exclusive alliance posed many questions.

The case discusses the exclusive marketing alliance between the two companies in detail and highlights the consequences of the same. It highlights the reasons for the break-up of Disney-McDonald’s decade old marketing pact and dilemmas regarding cross-promotional marketing future.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To discuss cross-promotional marketing strategy of McDonald’s and Walt Disney
  • To understand the genesis of the marketing deal and the reasons leading to its break-up.

Keywords : Mergers,Acquisitions,Alliances Case Study;Walt Disney; McDonald’s; Marketing Alliance; Biggest exclusive marketing pact; Happy Meals; Disney character toys; Cross Promotional Strategies; Entertainment Conglomerate; Fast Food Chain; Happy Meal Promotion; Marketing Partnership; Break-up of marketing partnership; Obesity; Corporate Social Responsibility

Contents : 
The Walt Disney Co.
Business Segments of Disney
The Exclusive Marketing Partnership
Obesity: A reason for break up?
Timeline of Disney
List of McDonald’s Happy Meal Toys
Corporate Social Responsibility for Disney

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