A group of Walt Disney signed documents relating to the creation of WED Enterprises
1. Typed document, 4pp, March 25, 1953, signed twice by Disney ("Walt Disney"), twice by William J. Hyland, and once by Loyd Wright, William Cottrell and Nathan Winecoff. This document introduces the share certificate for Walt Disney Incorporated, and Disney states that he has come to agreement with Walt Disney Productions to lease them his personal name to use for "merchandising licenses for fanciful characters" at a cost of at least $50,000 per year for ten years. Disney then agrees to grant Walt Disney Incorporated consent to enter into this license for a payment of $150,000 of the corporation's stock.
2. Walt Disney Incorporated certificate for 1,000 shares without par value, not inscribed or signed.
3. Typed document, 1p, November 7, 1953, signed by (Disney "Walter E. Disney") and Nathan Winecoff, changing the name of the company from Walt Disney Incorporated to WED Enterprises.
4. Typed document, 1p, November 7, 1953, signed by Disney ("Walt Disney") the remaining members of the Board of Directors, Loyd Wright, William Cottrell, Nathan Winecoff, and Richard Irvine, waiving notice of a special board meeting and approving the minutes of the previous meeting.
By the early 1950s, Walt Disney had grown frustrated with working within the confines of the large corporation he had created. He missed the early days of the company when he actively collaborated with the writers and animators and was searching for a new project. This feeling dovetailed with his dreams of building a theme park, and his brother Roy suggested that Walt set up a new company through which to develop the park. Additionally, Roy was concerned that Walt did not have a formal contract with the company he had founded and suggested one be drawn up. Roy also felt that the company should have a contract with Walt regarding the use of his name, as the man himself was so closely associated with the company's products.
These ideas led to the creation of Walt Disney Incorporated in 1952. The board of Walt Disney Productions then agreed to license Walt Disney's name and give him a personal contract for his services, with the proceeds to be paid to his personal company. Walt Disney Incorporated was later changed to WED Enterprises because Roy was concerned that the board of Walt Disney Productions would take umbrage at Walt using his name for a separate venture when they were paying him to license it for Walt Disney Productions. WED Enterprises was then set up in a bungalow on the Disney lot, and Walt hired his wife's brother-in-law Bill Cottrell and art director Dick Irvine; Walt's attorney Loyd Wright and Nat Winecoff rounded out the board.
8 1/2 x 11 in.