As expected by industry watchers, ViacomCBS has started layoffs nearly immediately following its official formation last week.
Comcast and CBS operations will be integrated to realize one big piece of the $500 million in merger cost savings (aka "synergies") promised to investors.
The first department to feel the effects is the CBS finance department, which is based in CBS’s famed “Black Rock” headquarters building in Midtown Manhattan — itself now up for sale as part of the cost slashing initiatives.
“The exact number of layoffs could not be determined, but one source characterized it as a ‘handful of people,’” reports the New York Post. “Insiders said the newly beefed-up company also is expected to slash jobs in its administrative and back-office divisions in an effort to eliminate duplication.”
CBS declined to comment.
Separately, CBS laid off at least a half-dozen staff (none on the TV show) as a result of the merging of the “Entertainment Tonight” website and its ET Live livestreaming network, according to the Post.