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Viacom, CBS reveal post-merger team

Soon-to-merge US media giants Viacom and CBS have revealed details of the senior team that will lead the combined company, which will be known as ViacomCBS.

Bob Bakish

The merger between the two firms, which are both owned by the Redstone family’s National Amusements, is expected to conclude at the third time of asking in December subject to regulatory approval, following attempts to bring them together in 2016 and 2018.

Previously announced senior appointments include Shari Redstone, the daughter of National Amusements CEO Sumner Redstone, as chair of ViacomCBS, overseeing the company on behalf of the parent firm.

Viacom CEO Bob Bakish will hold the same position at the newly merged company, with CBS president and acting CEO Joe Ianniello overseeing the majority of CBS’s assets.

Today it has been revealed that Ray Hopkins will be president of US networks distribution, having held a similar role at CBS.

Hopkins will oversee the company’s broadcast network affiliation distribution agreements and domestic distribution of the company’s owned and operated television stations, channels and networks across all platforms. He will also drive live linear content and on-demand digital distribution deals with third-party platforms.

Armando Nuñez has been named chairman of global distribution and chief content licensing officer. He will be responsible for all content licensing, including worldwide distribution and domestic syndication, for ViacomCBS-owned programming to third-party platforms.

Reporting to Nuñez will be Dan Cohen as president of global content licensing, while David Lynn will oversee the combined company’s international media networks, including Network 10 in Australia. Lynn previously served as president and CEO of Viacom International Media Networks.

The president of global consumer products will be Pam Kaufman, who will oversee ViacomCBS’s consumer products business, including global oversight of product and business development, licensing, merchandising, retail sales, consumer insights and marketing.

Jo Ann Ross, who was the first woman to serve as a sales chief at a broadcast network (for CBS), will be president and chief advertising revenue officer for domestic advertising sales. Ross will direct all multi-platform media sales efforts for the merged company.

Finally, John Halley has been named as chief operating officer, advertising revenue, and executive VP, advanced marketing solutions.

He will report to Ross, overseeing commercial and business operations for ViacomCBS’s advertising team and its portfolio of advertising and marketing solutions across linear, digital and social.

“These appointments mark an important step in the integration of CBS and Viacom,” said Bakish. “The seasoned executives we announced today will capitalise on ViacomCBS’s must-watch programming, iconic library and franchises, as well as its global production capacity to drive important new distribution, content licensing and advertising opportunities all over the world.”


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