Paramount Global and Skydance Media to merge


The newly merged company will be led by David Ellison as chairman and chief executive officer and Jeff Shell as president.

After months of merger negotiations, Paramount Global and Skydance Media have agreed to a deal that will see Paramount – the parent company of CBS, 10, Paramount+ and Nickelodeon – merge with its financial partner on several major recent films including Top Gun: Maverick and Mission Impossible – Dead Reckoning.

Paramount’s non-executive chair, Shari Redstone will sell the family’s controlling stake in Paramount in a transaction that will culminate in a merger. The transition is expected to close in the first half of 2025, as it will first be subject to regulatory approvals. 

The merger represents the end of an era for the Redstones, whose late patriarch, Sumner Redstone, transformed his family’s drive-in movie theatres into an empire including Paramount Pictures, CBS, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, and Network 10 in Australia and MTV.

The definitive agreement forms a “New Paramount” with the company saying the transaction “combines the Skydance Investor Group’s financial resources, deep operating experience, and expertise in cutting-edge technology with Paramount’s iconic IP, deep film and television library, and linear and streaming platforms that reach millions of viewers.”

The newly merged company will be led by David Ellison as chairman and chief executive officer and Jeff Shell as president. Ellison founded Skydance in 2010. 

David Ellison, founder and chief executive officer of Skydance said: “This is a defining and transformative time for our industry and the storytellers, content creators and financial stakeholders who are invested in the Paramount legacy and the longevity of the entertainment economy.

“I am incredibly grateful to Shari Redstone and her family who have agreed to entrust us with the opportunity to lead Paramount. We are committed to energizing the business and bolstering Paramount with contemporary technology, new leadership and a creative discipline that aims to enrich generations to come.”

The merger also includes a “go-shop” provision, meaning the Special Committee of the company’s Board of Directors and its representatives will have 45 days to potentially find a better offer. 

After talks briefly fell apart in June, other prospective bidders for National Amusements (parent company of Paramount) emerged including independent Hollywood producer Steven Paul, Seagram heir Edgar Bronfman, who is backed by private equity firm Bain Capital, and IAC Chair Barry Diller. 

In April, Mediaweek reported that there has been no detail about what the future might be for Paramount’s FTA business Network 10 if a merger was approved. 

Editor-in-chief James Manning wrote: “Some think whoever the new Paramount owner turns out to be, they will be mainly interested in the studio business, the US CBS network, and the US cable channels.

“Other assets might be sold off. Those could include the Paramount+ streaming business and the free streaming business Pluto TV in the US.

“International assets to be sold off could include Australia’s Network 10 and UK’s Channel 5.”

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