ViacomCBS Plans 2 Rounds of Layoffs

First cuts could affect around 100 people later this month, with a second round coming in March

Last Updated: February 12, 2020 @ 3:54 PM

ViacomCBS is planning two rounds of layoffs, an individual with knowledge of the plans tells TheWrap.

The first round could of cuts could come as early as Feb. 26 — ViacomCBS is set to hold its first earnings call as a combined company next Thursday — with the second round of layoffs coming at the end of March. The first batch of layoffs could affect as many as 100 people.

A representative for ViacomCBS declined to comment.

The initial round of layoffs would affect multiple departments, though Paramount’s film and TV operations, as well as CBS Interactive, are not expected to be heavily impacted. As TheWrap reported last week, ViacomCBS is planning the launch of a streaming service that would combine CBS All Access with the rest of its assets, including Paramount, Pluto TV and Viacom’s stable of channels.

The layoffs, which had been expected for some time, would come a little less than three months after Viacom and CBS closed their merger, bringing the two companies back together for the first time since 2006. In August of last year, when the two first reached their merger agreement, Viacom and CBS said that it would that the merger would result in cost savings of $500 million.

Next month, former NBCU studio executive George Cheeks will take over as CEO of CBS assets, replacing Joe Ianniello who had filled the role since Les Moonves’ departure in the fall of 2018.

News of the potential cuts was first reported by Variety.

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