CBS and Viacom formally completed their merger, temporarily claiming the spot as the biggest media merger until the AOL-Time Warner deal closes. The merger had an immediate effect on the new company’s cable holdings. CBS Cable and MTV Networks operations will combine under Tom Freston, chairman and CEO of MTV Networks, in a unit to be based in New York, Viacom said. Don Mitzner, CBS Cable president, and Lloyd Werner, executive vice president of sales and marketing for CBS Cable, will leave the company. David Hall, the president of TNN and CMT, will continue in that role, reporting to Freston. The company also said it plans to divest CBS Cable’s regional sports network business and Group W Network Services. Based on final figures, the deal valued CBS at $49.6 billion. CBS shares ceased trading Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange, finishing at $58.75, while Class B shares of Viacom rose $1.38 to $55.75.
CBS-Viacom Merger Officially Completed