The Walt Disney Company was founded in 1923 by Walt Disney and his brother Roy as Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio, later renamed The Walt Disney Studio in 1926, Walt Disney Productions in 1929, and finally renamed to its current name in 1986. It has the headquarters in Burbank, California.

The company was originally an animation studio that achieved significant success with an animated series that launched in 1928, Mickey Mouse. In the thirties and forties, at the same time as the affirmation of its animated short films, it began to produce animated feature films. In the following years, to differentiate the business and grow further, it entered the tourism sector, with theme parks, including Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resort, entertainment and merchandising.

The election of Michael Eisner as CEO allowed the company, from the middle of the decade, to return to profitability, capitalizing on its productions such as Disney Channel and Disney Stores and expanding or creating new theme parks.

Disney owns the rights to, among others, the Baby Einstein, Muppets, Jetix, Pixar, Marvel and Lucasfilm catalogs.