Tags: viacom | cbs | merger | television

Viacom, CBS Shares Rise After Report Suggests New Merger Talks Have Started

Viacom, CBS Shares Rise After Report Suggests New Merger Talks Have Started
(Mohamed Ahmed Soliman | Dreamstime)

Saturday, 13 January 2018 11:22 AM

Viacom Inc. and CBS Corp. are not in active merger discussions, although controlling shareholder Shari Redstone has had exploratory conversations with CBS directors about recombining the companies, two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters.

CBS and Viacom are both controlled by ailing Sumner Redstone, 94, and his daughter Shari, through their privately owned movie theater company, National Amusements Inc.

A report in entertainment and media news website The Wrap suggested Shari Redstone, president of the family's National Amusements movie-theater chain, had recently sparked new discussions within the companies about a possible merger.

Her father, Sumner Redstone, had combined CBS and Viacom in 2000, only to pull them apart six years later.

National Amusements in September 2016 formally requested that the boards of both companies consider the possibility of a new merger on an all-stock basis, then stopped the process at the end of that year.

National Amusements, CBS and Viacom declined to comment.

Viacom shares reacted quickly to the news. Shares of the company, which controls MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and the Paramount movie studio, rose nearly 10% Friday, or $2.95 share, to $33.76 a share from $30.90. Volume was strong - 12.45 million shares - compared to average volume of 5.07 million.

Shares of CBS rose more modestly, up 1.85% or $1.07 a share, to $58.83 a share from $57.78. Volume was 6.19 million compared with average volume of 4.01 million.

© 2018 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
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Viacom Inc. and CBS Corp. are not in active merger discussions, although controlling shareholder Shari Redstone has had exploratory conversations with CBS directors about recombining the companies, two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters.
viacom, cbs, merger, television
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2018-22-13
Saturday, 13 January 2018 11:22 AM
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