Paramount unveils job cuts and streaming JV plans at annual meeting

The current leadership of Outstanding Global presented a plan for the longer term on the annual shareholders meeting Tuesday, unless the corporate is sold.

CBS CEO George Cheeks, Paramount Media Networks CEO Chris McCarthy and Paramount Pictures CEO Brian Robbins – collectively the corporate's Office of the CEO – laid out strategic priorities, including exploring streaming three way partnership opportunities with other media firms, cutting $500 million in costs and divesting non-core assets.

The presentation comes at an inopportune time. Paramount has agreed to terms of the merger with a consortium of David Ellison's Skydance Media and personal equity firms RedBird Capital and KKR, CNBC reported Monday. The deal still awaits approval from Paramount's majority shareholder Shari Redstone, who owns National Amusements, which in turn owns 77% of Paramount's Class A shares.

Redstone supports the leadership team within the Office of the CEO, which has led the corporate since former CEO Bob Bakish resigned in late April.

The plan, which Paramount Global shareholders will hear on Tuesday, is actually intended to function a fallback for Redstone if she decides to not sell.

The strategies are being developed with the aim of reducing Paramount’s debt and returning the corporate to an investment grade rating. Earlier this yr, the corporate’s credit standing was downgraded to Junk status.

Paramount had long-term Debts As of March thirty first.

Paramount shares fell about 2 percent in early trading Tuesday.

At the start of Tuesday's presentation, Redstone identified the unorthodox structure of the CEO's office.

During the presentations, each executive noted that their future plans will deal with expanding content and franchises, but will deal with cutting spending and reducing debt.

“We will be careful in our capital investment, giving our best-in-class content the highest priority,” Robbins said throughout the presentation on Tuesday.

Cheeks said Tuesday that the corporate is “prepared to move quickly” on cost reductions, with a deal with “duplicate teams and functions across the organization, real estate, marketing and other corporate overhead categories.”

“To be clear, $500 million in cost savings is just the beginning,” Cheeks said, adding that more details, including timing, could be announced at the corporate's next earnings call in August.

Cheeks added that they’ll review various strategic initiatives that may help “optimize the asset mix and use proceeds to pay down debt.”

On Tuesday, Robbins said the corporate has been “aggressively exploring all options” in terms of partnerships with other streamers. He noted that Paramount has already received “significant interest” from other potential streaming partners for a three way partnership that may include the corporate's flagship service, Paramount+, which has greater than 70 million subscribers but continues to lose money.

“To be clear, we're not talking about marketing packages here. This is a deep and far-reaching relationship,” Robbins said.

The company can also be open to expanding content licensing, he said.

McCarthy said Paramount can also be currently considering divesting assets.

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