Paramount Global to Set to Unveil New Leadership Structure


As turmoil continues to surround the future of Paramount Global, details surrounding interim leadership and its proposed Skydance deal are coming to light, multiple sources told Variety.

Sunday was a consequential day in Shari Redstone’s ongoing exclusive bargaining window with David Ellison‘s Skydance, one that would see the Hollywood scion take majority ownership of Paramount Global and its owner National Amusements Inc. Skydance offered its “best and final” offer to Redstone on Sunday, sources added.

On the eve of its quarterly earnings call, two insiders familiar with Paramount Global said the board is expected to announce a new leadership committee to replace ousted CEO Bob Bakish. Expected to be named to these leadership roles are Paramount Pictures CEO Brian Robbins, CBS chief executive George Cheeks and MTV Entertainment Group President Chris McCarthy, the sources said.

Multiple insiders close to Paramount’s ongoing sales process said that letting Bakish go was the right move, but the new leadership structure is problematic at this fragile moment. There will not be a sole leader guiding the corporation through a potential sales process, said the insiders, and Cheeks, Robbins and McCarthy are not accustomed to collaboration across their portfolios. All details that are raising internal and external anxiety. There is, of course, Redstone — who is being closely watched by Wall Street and the media sector.

A third source familiar with the company said Redstone has been resolute in preferring the Skydance bid, which promises to keep her family media empire in tact and on track to provide future shareholder value. Or, she could appease some of her shareholders and evaluate a competing offer from Apollo and Sony Entertainment — a deal that would call for major structural changes, with asset liquidation and job losses likely. And that’s if that scenario could survive inevitable regulatory scrutiny.

Heading into earnings, the company has yet to disclose whether its network carriage deal with Charter, the country’s second largest cable operator next to Comcast, has been renewed. It is set to expire April 30.

The flurry of weekend activity is sure to weigh heavy on Paramount Global’s share price on Monday, and change the economics of any potential sale. Paramount Global is scheduled to report first quarter 2024 results tomorrow after market close. The earnings call with analysts — sans Bakish but possibly with the new leadership team — is set to start at 4:30 p.m. ET.

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