Wednesday, December 23, 2015

As the Sumner Turns

From this morning's Tom Taylor column...

The picture of a post-Sumner CBS is clearing up. Not completely – there will still be infighting in the courts and the penthouses. But it appears that #1, Les Moonves would win a promotion from CEO to Chairman at CBS, following Sumner Redstone passing. The news is reported by Bloomberg, and it would seem to guarantee some continuity at a company that’s admired on Wall Street. Bloomberg says that’s the deal made by current vice-chairman Shari Redstone, Sumner’s daughter. #2, it’s clear that Shari Redstone isn’t fading away. The Wall Street Journal has a sensational news story - Shari rejected a $1 billion offer in late 2014 to buy out her 20% stake in National Amusements, the controlling shareholder of CBS and Viacom. That would’ve meant Shari giving up her right to become chairman of CBS and Viacom. Event #3 is the ongoing legal challenge over the competency of 92-year-old Sumner Redstone. An L.A. judge ruled on Monday that Sumner needn’t undergo a medical exam and competency test. But it’s possible that Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman, Sumner’s health care guardian, may undergo a deposition.

(Photo: Sumner Redstone). Every time I read about this, I think to myself...Sumner's DAUGHTER Shari is the Vice Chairman, but the CEO Philippe Dauman is his health care guardian instead of Shari. That's so intensely weird and sad.