People/Biz

Viacom acquires AwesomenessTV

Global media co Viacom Inc. has acquired the Gen-Z orientated digital-first company AwesomenessTV in a move that will bolster its digital footprint. AwesomenessTV – previously owned by Comcast/NBCUniversal, Hearst and Verizon – will ...
July 27, 2018

Global media co Viacom Inc. has acquired the Gen-Z orientated digital-first company AwesomenessTV in a move that will bolster its digital footprint.

AwesomenessTV – previously owned by Comcast/NBCUniversal, Hearst and Verizon – will join Viacom’s portfolio of brands as part of Viacom Digital Studios, headed by former Awesomeness chief business officer Kelly Day (pictured), with the aim of accelerating Viacom’s digital transformation.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The addition of Awesomeness’ network of more than 158 million subscribers to Viacom will “strengthen” the media conglomerate’s “dominance” for the youth market and produce original digital programming.

According to a Viacom release, since the launch of Viacom Digital Studios, its brands have “achieved year-over-year domestic increases in social video views and watch time by 112% and 104%, respectively.” In addition, it’s YouTube subscribers have nearly doubled in the past year.

Jordan Levin, who has served as Awesomeness CEO since May 2017, will be leaving the company following a transition period post-acquisition, according to sources at Viacom.

The Los Angeles-based Awesomeness was co-founded in 2012 by Brian Robbins, who currently serves as president of Paramount Players at Viacom, and producer Joe Davola.

“Awesomeness has done an incredible job building their brand into a digital media powerhouse for today’s most sought-after and hard-to-reach youth audiences,” said Day, president of Viacom Digital Studios, in a statement. “The team brings strong digital expertise, deep connections with top talent and influencers, a world-class television and film studio, and a robust branded content team and creative agency that will accelerate the growth and scale of Viacom Digital Studios.”

About The Author
Senior staff writer Frederick Blichert comes to realscreen with a background as a journalist and freelance film critic. He has previously written for VICE, Paste Magazine, Senses of Cinema, Xtra, Canadian Cinematographer and elsewhere. He holds a Master of Arts in film studies from Carleton University and a Master of Journalism from the University of British Columbia.

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