Disney to cut 28,000 US employees due to coronavirus
Disneyland sign - Shutterstock

Disney announced Tuesday it will cut 28,000 jobs from its US parks and experiences division, pointing to depressed demand caused by the coronavirus and uncertainty on when it will recover.

The cuts were needed in light of social distancing requirements, exacerbated by tough restrictions imposed by the California state government, the company said in a press release.

About two-thirds of the affected employees are part-time staff.

"Over the past several months, we've been forced to make a number of necessary adjustments to our business, and as difficult as this decision is today, we believe that the steps we are taking will enable us to emerge a more effective and efficient operation when we return to normal," said Josh D'Amaro, chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products.

The move comes on the heels of Disney's $4.7 billion loss in the most recent quarter, which reflected the hit to its theme park business and the derailment or postponement of major movie releases.

These negative effects have been offset somewhat by soaring demand for the "Disney +" streaming service, where it steered premiers of "Mulan" and "Hamilton."

Shares of Disney fell 1.5 percent to $123.57 in after-hours trading.

© 2020 AFP