It’s finally official: CBS and Viacom announce merger
In a long-awaited announcement, CBS and Viacom revealed plans to merge into a single company, ViacomCBS, bringing all of Star Trek back under one umbrella.
On Tuesday it was officially announced that CBS and Viacom have negotiated a deal and are going to merge into a single company. The new company, titled ViacomCBS, will see the Star Trek franchise all under one roof for the first time since 2006 and positioned as a possible rival to Star Wars and the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The deal, which will likely be finalized by the end of the year, will see Viacom CEO Robert Bakish become ViacomCBS President and CEO while CBS CEO Joseph Ianniello will become Chairman and CEO of CBS. The new entity will be run by Shari Redstone, whose father originally founded the company. In a press release, she touted the potential for the new re-merged studio.
“Through CBS and Viacom’s shared passion for premium content and innovation, we will establish a world-class, multiplatform media organization that is well-positioned for growth in a rapidly transforming industry. Led by a talented leadership team that is excited by the future, ViacomCBS’s success will be underpinned by a commitment to strong values and a culture that empowers our exceptional people at all levels of the organization.”
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If it feels like Trek Nation has been talking about this forever, it’s because we have been. CBS and Viacom have been dancing around each other for years in a “will they/won’t they” dance almost from the moment they split. But with the entertainment landscape changing by the day, the two companies finally sat down and got a deal done.
In fact, you can thank the streaming wars for this deal finally becoming a reality. Both CBS and Viacom, who owns Paramount Pictures, saw the benefits of the countless hours of programming already produced and waiting to be streamed in addition to adding Nickelodeon, MTV and the plethora of other networks that are now part of the new company.
And make no mistake, bringing Star Trek, as well as Mission: Impossible, under one roof again also played a big part in making the merger a done deal.
Talk has already begun that with Alex Kurtzman making a push into animation and attempting to widen the traditional demographic for the franchise that Star Trek is positioning itself to become the next big entertainment juggernaut. The creation of the Star Trek Global Franchise Group was the first step in that plan but it surely won’t be the last.
In addition, you can figure that CBS All Access and original streaming content will be a key part going forward, as well as movies, video games and much more. So it’s looking more and more like a Star Trek Cinematic Universe is going to happen.
Welcome to the Trekverse everyone.
Keep it dialed to Redshirts Always Die for more about this developing story as it happens.