In a move that further supports Disney’s expansion in Asia, the House of Mouse has upped 16-year veteran Paul Candland to the newly created position of president of The Walt Disney Company, Asia.
Currently the prez of Walt Disney Japan, in the new role, Candland will oversee operations across Asia, including Greater China, Japan, Korea and Southeast Asia. He will report directly to Andy Bird, chairman of Walt Disney International.
Candland joined Disney in 1998, as the representative director and GM of Disney Store Japan. In 2002, he became managing director of Walt Disney Television International (Japan), responsible for launching the Disney Channel and Toon Disney in Japan. Pre-Disney, Candland served as president of Okinawa Pepsi-Cola, and subsequently served as Japan’s rep for Pepsi-Cola International.
Joining Candland in the exec shuffle is Stanley Cheung, the former MD of The Walt Disney Company, Greater China. Cheung is stepping into the role of chairman for the Greater China division. Joining Disney in 2004, he was responsible for driving the company’s strategy and coordinating its business in China. Prior to joining Disney, Cheung was managing director at Johnson & Johnson (China).
SVP Luke Kang is set to replace Cheung as MD, with direct oversight of the company’s businesses in Greater China. Kang joined Disney in 2011 as SVP and managing director of The Walt Disney Company (Korea). Pre-Disney, Kang was COO at Live 365, an internet radio company based in Silicon Valley.
As Disney looks to grow its Asian presence, the new executive structure allows for more sharing of best practices across the business and the region.
On announcing the appointments, Bird noted Disney’s rapid growth in the region and that Greater China is set to become Disney’s biggest international market in the coming years. China is already one of the company’s larger markets, with a well-established consumer products and TV distribution business. Construction is currently underway on Disney’s first store in China, as well as on the Shanghai Disney Resort.