Paramount agrees to merger with Skydance
Paramount agrees to merger with Skydance

Paramount Global will merge with Skydance Media. This brings to an end months of negotiations with many hurdles and catapults the traditional entertainment company behind CBS, MTV and the “Top Gun” series into a new era.

Under a deal approved late Sunday, Skydance will acquire National Amusements, a holding company with a majority stake in Paramount. National Amusements is run by Shari Redstone, the daughter of media mogul Sumner Redstone, who died in 2020.

The deal comes as Paramount has been losing money in its attempt to establish itself in a competitive streaming market dominated by Netflix, Disney and several others. Its market value has fallen by more than half since 2019, even as it continued to steer blockbuster hits such as “Top Gun: Maverick” (2022). Most recently, the company has ventured into animation and sports content.

The agreement also comes after the Board of Directors spent more than six months reviewing various offers and counter-offers, with a prtAn attempt to close a deal with Skydance failed just a few weeks ago. And if regulators agree, the Redstone era will end.

Skydance founder David Ellison will be the chairman and CEO. The son of Oracle billionaire Larry Ellison founded Skydance in 2010 and the company quickly established itself as a major player in Hollywood. It was involved in the production of films such as the Tom Cruise action films “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” (2011) and “Jack Reacher” (2012), as well as “World War Z” (2013) starring Brad Pitt.

Charles E. Phillips Jr., a Paramount board member, said the merger would bring “immediate value and future profit opportunities” to shareholders.

“After extensive negotiations with Skydance, we believe this proposed transaction will position Paramount for success in a rapidly evolving industry landscape,” Phillips said in a statement Monday.

It’s possible a new buyer could still take over Paramount, as the deal approved Monday includes a 45-day “go-shop” period during which alternative offers can be considered. Other potential suitors include media mogul Barry Diller, whose digital media conglomerate has signed nondisclosure agreements with National Amusements that are seen as a prelude to the deal, according to a New York Times report.

The Wall Street Journal first reported on a possible agreement with Skydance last week.

By Everly