We've Got Hollywood Covered

CBS, Viacom Merger Gets Go-Ahead From Redstone’s National Amusements

Deal is expected to close in early December

CBS Corp. and Viacom announced on Monday that Shari Redstone’s family-owned holding company National Amusements formally approved of the merger between the two companies.

The new target for the deal closing is early December, the two companies said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Redstone is the president of National Amusements, which is the controlling stakeholder for both companies, and she will serve as chairman of the board of the combined ViacomCBS.

Redstone had been pushing for the two companies to merger for roughly three years. In August, CBS and Viacom announced the long-awaited merger of the companies, which split back in 2005.

CBS and Viacom agreed to an all-stock deal that valued Viacom at roughly $12 billion. CBS shareholders will own approximately 61% and Viacom shareholders will own approximately 39% of the new company, ViacomCBS. The company has touted an annual revenue of $28 billion.

Viacom CEO Bob Bakish is set to lead the newly combined company as president and CEO, with Joe Ianniello serving as chairman and CEO of CBS, which puts him in charge of all CBS-branded assets. Ianniello has been serving as acting president and CEO since last September, following the resignation of Leslie Moonves.

Other CBS Corp assets including pay cable network Showtime, Pop TV and publisher Simon & Schuster are now under Bakish, with CBS chief creative officer David Nevins — who also CEO and chairman of Showtime — will report to both Ianniello and Bakish.

Christina Spade will serve as CFO of the  combined company —  Viacom CFO Wade Davis will depart once the deal closes — and Christa D’Alimonte will serve as general counsel and secretary.