Disney has nominated Sheryl Sandberg, chief operating officer for the largest social networking site Facebook, to become part of its Board of Directors as an independent board member.
“Sheryl has been at the forefront of a technological revolution that’s opened up a world of new possibilities for consumers and which has greatly affected the way we do business. Her unique insight, born of great practical experience, will be of considerable value to Disney’s shareholders,” President and CEO Robert Iger said in a press statement.
The post becomes effective immediately when she is elected, along with the re-election of the other twelve members of the board, by the shareholders at its annual meeting on March 10 of next year in San Antonio, Texas.
Before joining Facebook as its COO (its previous one, Owen Van Natta, joined rival MySpace to be its CEO), Sandberg was the Vice President of Global Online Sales and Operations for Google, and was a former Chief of Staff at the US Treasury Department.
Her election makes her the second tech industry head to join the board, with CEO of Apple Steve Jobs already having a seat at the board after Disney acquired Pixar Animation Studios in May 2006. Jobs remains to be the largest shareholder in the company, owning seven percent of Disney stock.
But having two technology heads in its board of directors might not be a bad thing, as its already has a foot in the Web 2.0 world. It already owns an equity stake in Hulu, alongside NBC Universal and News Corporation; owns a virtual world for kids titled Club Penguin; and is rumoured to be in discussions to be part of Apple’s rumoured subscription TV service.