“Content Is What Viacom Is” – CEO Bob Bakish Talks Success and Strategy on CNBC

by Stuart Winchester, Viacom


Viacom CEO: Content is essentially what Viacom is from CNBC. Used with permission.

Less than two weeks after reporting fourth-quarter and full-year 2017 earnings headlined by year-over-year revenue gains built on strong partnerships and improving ratings, Viacom President and CEO Bob Bakish appeared on CNBC this morning to further underscore the company’s recent successes and positive long-term trajectory.

“You look at ’17, and I’m really happy with what we’ve accomplished,” Bakish told CNBC’s Julia Boorstin. “We rolled out this notion of flagship brands, which is about prioritization and multiplatform expression; we grew ratings and our ratings had been declining; our ad sales business went from minus eight in the quarter I took it over to flat last quarter, and that’s a big improvement; our distribution relationships, we said we were going to broaden them and bring more value to the table, and we did exactly that, and along the way renewed or extended half the sub-base; we moved the needle on content and IP, including doing some cross-house deals.”

There is still a lot of work to do, Bakish acknowledged, as he outlined the reasons for his optimism. “At the core, what Viacom is, is it’s a company of passionate content entrepreneurs that are expert in creating, producing, packaging and monetizing content on a global basis.”

Bakish also pointed to Viacom’s deep content library and novel partnerships arrangements – such as the company’s recent Charter renewal that included co-production of original content and collaborations around advanced advertising – as factors likely to contribute to the company’s long-term growth.

“Content is at the center of virtually every conversation,” Bakish said. “And content is what Viacom is.”

A Whole Lot to Like About Viacom’s Fourth Quarter and Year-End Earnings

by Stuart Winchester, Viacom

When Viacom released earnings for the fourth quarter and full year of 2015 earlier this week, there was a whole lot to like. Those of you who are interested in the dollars and cents of it can read the full press release here, which provides year-to-year comparisons and a more minute breakdown of the numbers.

But what’s behind the dollar signs? Content. Really good content – the kind of stuff that deeply engages fans, weaving its way into the fabric of their lives. We’re talking about Nickelodeon’s new hit, Game Shakers, which is the number one live-action show for kids 2-11 and has inspired 3 million downloads of its Sky Whale game. Or Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, which has seen its 18-24 audience skyrocket since the new host claimed the desk in September. Or MTV’s iconic Video Music Awards piling up a massive 21.4 million tweets – a record for an entertainment program.

There’s plenty more. Great stuff is pouring out of all of our brands, from VH1 to Paramount to BET to MTV’s European Music Awards, and we continue to expand, with Viacom’s International operations launching 21 channels over the past year. Scroll through the slides below to see the headlines, and check out our full investor newsletter here to see the top-rated shows by each of our networks and more.

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