It's been announced that CBS and Viacom have finally been able to strike a merger deal. According to THR, the deal will see the two companies join forces as ViacomCBS Inc., with Viacom CEO Bob Bakish leading the combined company as CEO, and CBS Corp. acting CEO Joe Ianniello also remaining in a top executive position where he will "oversee CBS-branded assets." Shari Redstone, who is the controlling shareholder of both companies via National Amusements, will become chairwoman of the merged companies.
“I am really excited to see these two great companies come together so that they can realize the incredible power of their combined assets," she said in a statement. "My father once said ‘content is king,’ and never has that been more true than today. Through CBS and Viacom’s shared passion for premium content and innovation, we will establish a world-class, multiplatform media organization that is well-positioned for growth in a rapidly transforming industry."
"Led by a talented leadership team that is excited by the future, ViacomCBS’s success will be underpinned by a commitment to strong values and a culture that empowers our exceptional people at all levels of the organization,” Redstone added, per Business Wire.
Ianniello also commented on the announcement, saying, "This merger brings an exciting new set of opportunities to both companies. At CBS, we have outstanding momentum right now – creatively and operationally – and Viacom’s portfolio will help accelerate that progress."
"I look forward to all we will do together as we build on our ongoing success," he continued. "And personally, I am pleased to remain focused on CBS’s top priority – continuing our transformation into a global, multiplatform, premium content company.”
Finally, Bakish also issued a statement on the merger, saying, “Today marks an important day for CBS and Viacom, as we unite our complementary assets and capabilities and become one of only a few companies with the breadth and depth of content and reach to shape the future of our industry."
"Our unique ability to produce premium and popular content for global audiences at scale – for our own platforms and for our partners around the world – will enable us to maximize our business for today, while positioning us to lead for years to come," he added
"As we look to the future, I couldn’t be more excited about the opportunities ahead for the combined company and all of our stakeholders – including consumers, the creative community, commercial partners, employees and, of course, our shareholders,” Bakish concluded.