Fast Company magazine has released its list of the “The World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies” for 2019, and The Walt Disney Company ranks right near the top in the No. 4 spot. The list spotlights the businesses that are making the most profound impact on both industry and culture and thriving in a rapidly changing world.
In announcing the ranking, Fast Company singled out Disney’s new ESPN+ streaming service, the upcoming Disney+ streaming service, and the company’s commitment to deliver its unparalleled portfolio directly to consumers.
Talking about why Disney is spinning up its own streaming services instead of partnering with Netflix, direct-to-consumer chief Keven Mayer said, “We do a better job that others. We know [our] brands viscerally.”
For all the things Disney fans love about The Walt Disney Company, its innovative spirit is often left out. But for many of us, it was Walt Disney’s passion to innovate that led to the studios’ domination in animation, the entire concept of the modern day theme park, a passion for mass transit development, and even seemingly simple things like building recycling into the fabric of the Magic Kingdom.
That spirit continues today throughout the company and will doubtless expand when the acquisition of 21st Century Fox is complete adding many new brands to the company’s portfolio.
How does this innovation happen? In addition to the Mouse’s in-house Research Labs, like Walt Disney Imagineering, Disney partners with Entertainment Technology focused universities around the globe to expand their innovation in areas like Visual Computing, Robotics, Human Computer Interaction, and Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. The fruits of these projects often find their way into Disney movies, television, and theme park divisions, including possibly the new ‘Play’ pavilion coming to EPCOT.
This sort of recognition is pretty cool for The Walt Disney Company placing it in the top companies around the word. The complete list can be viewed at FastCompany.com, as well as in the March/April 2019 issue of Fast Company magazine.