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The merger between Paramount and Skydance suspended at the last minute

The merger between Paramount and Skydance suspended at the last minute
The merger between Paramount and Skydance suspended at the last minute

The studio will continue looking for a buyer after the operation that had been in negotiation for months fell through.

After months of negotiation, going around, generating headlines and even counteroffers, in the end the much announced merger of Paramount Global (former ViacomCBS) and Skydance Media will not occur. The deal has been canceled at the last minute.

Despite the fact that all the indicators and half the industry considered it safe, the operation has been stopped by Shari Redstone, president of National Amusements (NAI), majority shareholder of the media conglomerate Paramount Global, which includes the Paramount Pictures studio and other companies such as the CBS channel, Showtime, MTV and Nickelodeon.

National Amusements announced Tuesday that they have been unable to reach mutually acceptable terms regarding the potential transaction for its majority stake in Paramount Global to be acquired by Skydance Media, the streaming company. David Ellison (son of billionaire Larry Ellison and brother of producer Megan Ellison).

In an official statement, the months of previous work were appreciated, leaving open the door of collaboration and the possibility of negotiating again with the production company behind recent hits of the studio such as Top Gun: Maverick, starring Tom Cruise.

However, some media claim that the decision to suspend the merger was made at the last moment by the company itself. Shari Redstone, surprising the rest of those present at the negotiation, who expected that the agreement would be signed. A script twist that does not stop NAI’s plans in terms of finding a buyer for Paramout while it continues to fall on the stock market.

Who can buy Paramount?

National Amusements, of which Redstone owns 77% of the voting shares, has months searching for a buyer for Paramount, whose debt amounts to 14.6 billion dollars.

This urgency for the purchase occurs at a delicate moment for the advertising market, a sector that is weighed down by the hard blow of the Hollywood screenwriters’ strikes and that is seeing how audience interest in traditional television channels falls in favor of new formats such as streaming.

On April 4, Skydance Media managed to paralyze any further conversations between Paramount and other possible interested parties in its purchase, including the $26 billion offer that the investment fund Apollo Global Management had offered for film studies. After the latest news, it seems that the possibility of new actors coming into play with offers is once again open.

Source: Ambito

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