Bob Bakish Officially Ousted as Paramount CEO

Paramount Global CEO Bob Bakish is officially out at the company.

The entertainment conglomerate — in the middle of a sales process — is turning to a handful of top executives to run the company.

Chris McCarthy, George Cheeks and Brian Robbins will make up an “Office of the CEO,” running Paramount on a day-to-day basis for now. The three executives will work with the Paramount board and CFO Naveen Chopra.

According to Paramount’s quarterly report, Bakish will officially step down on Tuesday, and has agreed to remain employed by the company through Oct. 31 as a “senior advisor.”

The dramatic change comes as Paramount is in the middle of an exclusive negotiating window with a potential buyer group consisting of David Ellison’s Skydance, RedBird Capital and KKR, with talks circling a plan that would keep Paramount public but with Skydance and RedBird executives effectively running things and executing a new strategy.

At the same time, the private equity firm Apollo has held discussions with Sony Pictures about possibly doing a joint bid in a deal that would take Paramount private in a merger with Sony and Apollo.

On the company’s earnings call, McCarthy said of working with Robbins and Cheeks that “it’s a true partnership. We have a deep respect for one another and we’re going to lead and manage this company together.

“On that note, we’re finalizing a long-term strategic plan to best position this storied company to reach new and greater heights in our rapidly changing world. The plan is focused on three pillars: First, make the most of our hit content; second, strengthen our balance sheet; and third, optimize our streaming strategy.”

Added Robbins, “We look forward to coming back to you in short order to share our plan and discussing it all in detail at that time.”

The company did not take any questions on the call, with the executives instead delivering only prepared remarks.

(Excerpt) Read more in: The Hollywood Reporter

Bob Bakish Officially Ousted as Paramount CEO

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