Paramount Announces New Leadership, Sees Revenue Growth As D2C Losses Narrow

Confirming Bob Bakish's departure as CEO of Paramount Global, the company now says it will start up an "Office of the CEO," appointing three of the senior company executives to run the company.

Those company executives are George Cheeks, president/CEO of CBS; Chris McCarthy, president and CEO of Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios and Paramount Media Networks; and Brian Robbins, president/CEO of Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon. 

Paramount says Cheeks, McCarthy and Robbins will work closely with Naveen Chopra, CFO, and the Paramount Board of Directors.

Bakish joined Viacom in 1997, becoming CEO of Viacom in 2016 and the CEO of the combined Paramount Global company that was created in 2019 with the merger of CBS and Viacom.

Earlier news reports cited Bakish's departure as part of a deal that involved current negotiations involving Skydance Media, a TV movie producer that is looking to buy Paramount.



Bakish's departure had much to do with increasing viewership declines, and steadily eroding advertising revenue of its live, linear TV networks. 

At the same time, in an effort to transition more to digital premium video platforms, Bakish presided over new direct-to-consumer streaming business which moved at a slower growth rate coupled with big start-up net losses. This resulted in between $1.5 billion and $2.0 billion per year.

Paramount in its release of its first-quarter financial report -- an announcement made on the same day as Bakish's departure -- showed the company's D2C business narrowed its cash flow net loss (adjusted operating income before depreciation and amortization) to $286 million.

It posted a $511 million loss in the first quarter 2023.

Paramount's D2C business -- primarily the Paramount+ premium streaming platform -- showed a 24% gain in revenues to $1.88 billion, with a 31% improvement to ad revenues to $520 million, and a 22% hike in subscription revenues to $1.36 billion.

Paramount+ added 3.7 million worldwide net subscribers in the period -- now totaling 71 million -- with the average revenue per user (ARPU) growing 26%.

For the company's linear TV business, revenues inched up 1% to $5.2 billion -- largely attributable to a sharp increase in advertising (up 14% to $2.6 billion) largely due to CBS and Paramount+'s airing of the Super Bowl in February. 

It is estimated that the entire Super Bowl programming day -- pre- and post-game and the in-game action itself -- yielded an estimated $600 million in advertising revenue, a record for the big TV sports event.

Positive cash flow at the company's linear TV business (Paramount's ‘TV Media’ unit) improved 11% to $1.5 billion.

Filmed entertainment --- theatrical revenue and content sales --- grew 3% to $605 million.

Monday's close of Paramount Global stock was up 3% to $12.25.

2 comments about "Paramount Announces New Leadership, Sees Revenue Growth As D2C Losses Narrow".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, April 30, 2024 at 7:36 a.m.

    Rule by committee always works---or does it ?  I wonder if they have to have a unanimous vote on each issue before they take action---or is two out of three ok?

  2. John Grono from GAP Research, April 30, 2024 at 8:57 p.m.

    Ed ... rock, paper, scissors?

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