Paramount Global’s Shares Drop on Restructuring Plan

Paramount Stock

Paramount Global’s (NASDAQ:PARA) top executives detailed a comprehensive restructuring plan on Tuesday to achieve $500 million in annualized cost savings. The plan also includes potential asset sales and exploring partnerships, such as joint ventures, for its Paramount+ streaming service.

Facing challenges like other media companies, Paramount’s traditional television business has dwindled, while its streaming video service needs to regain lost revenue.

The trio of executives leading the charge—CBS President and CEO George Cheeks, Chris McCarthy, president and CEO of Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios, and Paramount Pictures President and CEO Brian Robbins—have taken the helm since the departure of former CEO Bob Bakish in April, amidst tensions with Shari Redstone, Paramount’s controlling shareholder.

Redstone voiced support for the co-CEOs and their strategic plan, highlighting their extensive experience and track record of success within the company and the industry.

This shareholder meeting marked the first public address by the new leadership trio. However, the market response was not entirely positive, with Paramount’s shares dropping 1.9% in early trading following the executives’ presentation.

Since December 2019, Paramount has witnessed a significant decline in market value, losing about $18 billion after Redstone reunified CBS and Viacom.

In April, Paramount engaged in exclusive merger discussions with Skydance Media but opted not to renew this exclusivity period, considering a competing nonbinding offer from Sony Pictures Entertainment and Apollo Global Management.

According to sources familiar with the negotiations, Skydance’s latest proposal involves Paramount acquiring the independent studio in an all-stock deal worth $4.75 billion. Additionally, Skydance, RedBird Capital, and KKR plan to inject at least $1.5 billion in fresh capital to alleviate debt. They also intend to purchase 40% of Paramount’s nonvoting class B stock at $15 per share.

In a parallel transaction, Skydance aims to acquire National Amusements, a privately held company that owns movie theaters in the U.S., UK, and Latin America. This acquisition would grant Skydance CEO David Ellison voting control over Paramount, facilitating the merger.

National Amusements is currently evaluating multiple offers, including Skydance’s, but no decision has been reached yet.

Featured Image: Megapixl

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