CBS Corporation

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
CBS Corporation

legal form Corporation
ISIN US1248572026
founding 1970
resolution 4th December 2019
Reason for dissolution Merger with Viacom Inc. to ViacomCBS Inc.
Seat New York City , United StatesUnited StatesUnited States 
management Joseph Ianniello, interim CEO
Number of employees 12,700
sales $ 13.7 billion
Branch media
As of December 31, 2017

The CBS Corporation was an American media group based in New York City , New York .

Due to the merger with Viacom Inc., the CBS Corporation was dissolved. Since December 4, 2019, the joint company has been called ViacomCBS Inc.


The company was formed in 1970 as CBS Films from the restructuring of syndication Department of Broadcasting network Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS), but was in Viacom, a 1971 acronym for Video & Audio Communications , renamed. Due to a new regulation of the Federal Communications Commission in 1973 the television networks were prohibited from owning their own syndication companies, whereupon Viacom was spun off .

On January 1, 2006, the company was renamed CBS Corporation and the "new" Viacom was founded, to which the company parts - essentially MTV Networks and Paramount Pictures - were transferred. In the course of this division, the focus of the orientation of the CBS Corporation shifted to the USA. The Group includes television and radio networks , radio stations and a publishing group that also is active in the production and distribution of television content, as well as the management of billboards ( billboards ).

Leslie Moonves was Chief Executive Officer of the company until his resignation in 2018 , he was replaced ad interim by Joseph Ianniello. The majority shareholder is Sumner Redstone , who holds the shares (71%) through his National Amusements Holding.


1970-2005 (as Viacom )

In 1987 the US cinema chain National Amusements acquired Viacom and operated cable channels and produced television programs.

After Time Inc.'s takeover of Paramount Pictures failed in 1991 , Viacom was able to take over Paramount. This also included the acquisition of Simon & Schuster , Blockbuster's Video and Music Stores , Warner-Amex Satellite Entertainment , Showtime Networks , Paramount Communications , the TV station Nickelodeon and the music station MTV , as well as theme parks, cinema chains, TV and radio stations.

CBS was bought by conglomerate Westinghouse Electric Corporation in 1995 . The traditional Westinghouse group then decided to start restructuring into a pure media group, bought Infinity Broadcasting in 1996 and began to sell the old core businesses; the defense systems division went to the armaments group Northrop Grumman in 1996 ; the nuclear energy technology division followed in 1998, which was acquired by British Nuclear Fuels plc. went. As part of this rebuild, Westinghouse changed its name to CBS Corporation in 1997 .

After a relaxation of the media laws in the USA, Viacom was able to take over the former parent company, which at the time was called CBS Corporation , for 36 billion US dollars. Viacom's revenue prior to its merger with CBS Corporation was $ 20.2 billion.

In Germany , the group made headlines in 2004 with the purchase of 75.8% of the shares in Viva Media AG . Viva has been fully owned by Viacom since June 2005.

Although the group was in good financial shape, the share price did not develop as hoped. Various investors complained that the group was only interesting for conservative investors and that the shrinking US advertising market, which hit traditional, terrestrial networks, was preventing the entire company from growing.

These objections were finally taken up by Sumner Redstone, who with more than 70% share was the largest single shareholder and CEO of the group and who was interested in investors who drove up the value of his holdings. Redstone's proposal in March 2005 to split the group into two separate stock corporations was approved by the Management Board on June 20, 2005. The formulated goal was the division into a company that encompassed the barely growing US market (terrestrial networks, books, advertising) and a company that encompassed the profitable global market (worldwide cable broadcasters and film production / distribution).

For one of the two future companies, plans were made to revive the short-lived name of CBS Corporation and the split between broadcasting on the one hand and cable TV and film on the other hand, inevitably resulted in the general structure that was in place before the merger in 1999. The CBS Corporation would again include the CBS after which it was named. This also included all parts of the CBS Corporation that were classified as "slowly growing" like the CBS network: the United Paramount Network (UPN), the radio network Infinity Broadcasting , the terrestrial radio and television stations of the Viacom group Pay TV platform Showtime Networks , the billboard company Viacom Outdoor , the publishing house Simon & Schuster , the Paramount theme parks and finally Paramount Television , the television production arm and television distribution arm of Paramount Pictures . Long-time entertainment director of CBS and vice president of Viacom, Leslie Moonves, was designated to lead the CBS Corporation.

Legally, the CBS Corporation is the former Viacom, whose name has been changed. The "new" Viacom created by a spin-off , on the other hand, is not legally the successor company of the old Viacom, but a new company to which the company parts - mainly MTV Networks and Paramount Pictures and Paramount Home Entertainment - were transferred. This division was completed on January 1, 2006.

2006–2019 (as CBS Corporation )

CBS logo

The first month of the CBS Corporation was strongly influenced by internal restructuring and consolidation, so under the sign of the new parent company, Infinity Broadcasting became CBS Radio Network and Viacom Outdoor became CBS Outdoor . On January 17th, Leslie Moonves announced that Paramount Television and CBS Productions had been merged under the new, unified brand name CBS Paramount Television (copyright name CBS Studios, Inc. ).

On January 24, 2006, the CBS Corporation surprisingly announced that they had agreed with Time Warner and Tribune Entertainment to transfer the two ailing television networks UPN and The WB in September 2006 - at the beginning of the new television year 2006–2007 - to The CW Television Network ( The CW for short ) to merge.

On January 27, 2006, the announcement followed that they were working on selling the Paramount Parks; the company Cedar Fair reported on May 22 that it will take over the theme parks for nearly 1.3 billion US dollars in the third quarter of 2006.

On May 15, 2008, CBS Corporation took over CNET Networks for US $ 1.8 billion and incorporated this business together with into the CBS Interactive division .

In 2017, the insolvent Australian Network Ten was taken over with the Australian WIN Television , each with a 50% stake . On August 13, 2019, CBS and Viacom announced their merger. The combined company would be called ViacomCBS , with Shari Redstone serving as chairman.

Activities and brands

  • Television networks: CBS Television Network (200 stations), The CW Network
  • TV channel: CBS (16), The CW (8)
  • Television Production / Distribution: CBS Television Studios, CBS Studios International, CBS Television Distribution
  • Film / TV studio studios: CBS Studio Center, CBS Television City, CBS Films
  • DVD production / distribution: CBS Home Entertainment
  • Licensing / Merchandising: CBS Consumer Products, Westinghouse Electric Corporation
  • Pay TV: Showtime Networks, Smithsonian Networks, CBS Sports Network
  • Internet and online networks: CBS Interactive
  • Radio stations: CBS Radio (130), CBS Interactive Music Group (,,
  • Outdoor advertising / billboards: CBS Outdoor
  • Published by Simon & Schuster
  • Music rights / productions: CBS Records
  • Marketing solutions: CBS Connections
  • Restaurants: CBS Scene
  • Environmental protection projects: EcoMedia

Web links

Commons : CBS  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b CBS Corporation: Annual Report 2017. (PDF) Accessed April 1, 2018 .
  2. CBS CORPORATION TO ACQUIRE CNET NETWORKS, INC. . CBS Corporation. May 15, 2008. Archived from the original on January 5, 2010. Retrieved on May 15, 2008.
  3. Drew Angerer: CBS and Viacom merge into billion dollar deal . In: August 14, 2019, accessed April 7, 2020 .