“They’ll both win if they get together,” Needham analyst Laura Martin says. “They’re going to get it done. Though, you could argue they’re still not big enough together.”
As CBS Corp. and former sister company Viacom Inc. rekindle talks of a long-anticipated merger, a potential deal could look very different than a year ago, when both sites walked away from the negotiating table amid a legal tug of war.
“Viacom is in a much better position since last time. They’ve shown the revitalization is gaining traction,” CFRA Research analyst Tuna Amobi told TheWrap. “Their leverage is better than last time.”
Viacom, which owns MTV, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and Paramount Pictures, has taken significant and noticeable steps to better position itself both in the industry, where cable TV channels have become less popular, and in negotiations with CBS. Viacom earlier this year bought the ad-supported free streaming service Pluto TV, which has shown early success with monthly active users increasing 31% since December and reaching 16 million users in April.
In another sign of increasing profitability, Viacom over the past two quarters also has reported year-over-year growth and exceeded forecasts for earnings-per-share, though Viacom shares…
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