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ViacomCBS Gets a New Name: Paramount

Paramount
(Image credit: Paramount)

NEW YORK—ViacomCBS has announced that it will change its name to Paramount on Weds. Feb. 16, with shares of PARAA (Class A common), PARA (Class B common) and PARAP (Preferred Stock), starting to trade on the Nasdaq stock exchange on February 17, 2022.

"This is an exciting moment in the history of our company," president and CEO Bob Bakish and Shari Redstone, non-executive chair of the company's Board of Directors, said in an internal memo quoted by CBS News, which is part of ViacomCBS. 

"It has been one year since the spectacular launch of Paramount+ and two years since the successful merger of Viacom and CBS,” the memo said. “In that time, we have shown the world what we knew from the start: that together, aligned around a shared vision and shared strategy, we create a whole that is far greater than the sum of its parts."

"For more than a century, the name Paramount has been synonymous with great entertainment and industry leadership. It's part of our history, as pioneers of the Golden Age of Hollywood," Bakish and Redstone said. "But as Paramount+ has made clear, it's also about our bright future,” CBS News reported

The name change occurred as ViacomCBS reported mixed Q4, 2021 earnings. 

During the quarter, the company added a record 9.4 million streaming subscribers to hit 56 million subs. 

Streaming revenue rose 48% year-over-year, with streaming subscription revenue growing 84% year-over-year and streaming advertising revenue grew 26% year-over-year, driven by growth in advertising on Pluto TV and Paramount+, the company reported. 

Subscriber additions in the quarter were overwhelmingly led by Paramount+, with 7.3 million new subs, bringing total Paramount+ subscribers to 32.8 million in the quarter.

Pluto TV revenue grew 45% year-over-year to $362M, as it added 10 million monthly average users to a total of 64 million in the quarter.

Total revenue was also up by 16% but earnings were lower than Wall Street forecasts and the stock fell in early after hours trading, declining by 5% at 5:39 p.m. ET. 

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.