National Amusements, the mass media holding company controlled by the Redstone family which holds the majority of voting shares for Viacom and CBS, has approved the proposed merger of the two companies. As a result, the US$30 billion deal is expected to close by early December, according to a release issued by both companies. That puts a finer point on the projected timeline for the merger, as earlier statements had the deal closing by the end of the year.
Once customary closing conditions are reached and the merger occurs, CBS will delist its shares from the New York Stock Exchange and will list shares under the new corporate entity, ViacomCBS, which will trade on the NASDAQ stock market under the symbols VIACA and VIAC.
Bob Bakish (pictured), Viacom president and CEO, will helm the newly formed company, while CBS president and acting CEO Joe Ianniello will become chairman and CEO of CBS. Shari Redstone, National Amusements president, will be appointed chair of the merged entity.
(With files from Jillian Morgan)