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Bloomberg: Viacom's Shari Redstone Considering Recombining Company With CBS

Bloomberg: Viacom's Shari Redstone Considering Recombining Company With CBS

Shari Redstone, daughter of the ailing 93-year-old Sumner Redstone, is now in control of her father's media empire, Viacom, Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA) (NASDAQ: VIAB) and will soon need to decide how to proceed.

According to a report by Bloomberg, Shari Redstone is considering a move to recombine Viacom with CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS) after more than 10 years of operating as two separate companies. Bringing the two companies together under the same umbrella would "reunite the two pillars" of the Redstone family's media empire.

There is, however, one problem. The Bloomberg report suggested that CBS' investors could "blanch at the idea" of taking on Viacom's "struggling" cable and studio networks.

Meanwhile, CBS' CEO Leslie Moonves hasn't received any sort of indication that a deal is in the works. After all, the executive remains "on good terms" with members of the Redstone family, and Shari Redstone also serves as a vice chair of CBS and at Viacom.

Related Link: Loop Capital Says Viacom's On "Simply The Worst Cold Streak Ever" Following Ben-Hur" Bomb

A merger between Viacom and CBS is one option to consider, but taking any sort of action may be easier now than it has been in the past.

The Redstone family settled a dispute with Viacom's former CEO Philippe Dauman and board member George Abrams earlier this month. The outgoing executives were replaced with Shari Redstone herself and people backed by her.

"Shari has done a masterful job re-asserting herself at Viacom," Paul Sweeney, a Bloomberg Intelligence analyst, was quoted as saying. "Les's main strength is programming. Viacom is in dire need of improved programming at both its cable networks and its Paramount film studio."

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Posted-In: Bloomberg CBS George Abrams Leslie MoonvesNews Rumors Management Media Best of Benzinga


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