Paramount Global, the owner of broadcast and cable TV networks, revealed on Tuesday its decision to lay off hundreds of employees, aiming to streamline operations and boost revenue, CNN reported.
This move comes in the wake of CBS, a network under Paramount Global, achieving unprecedented advertising sales and record-breaking viewership during the Super Bowl.
CEO Bob Bakish conveyed the layoff announcement in a memo obtained by CNN, refraining from specifying the exact number but insiders suggest around 800 employees, approximately 3% of the company’s workforce, will be affected.
Bakish had hinted at the workforce reduction in a January 25 memo, emphasising it as part of the company’s strategy for earnings growth.
The impact of these cuts will be felt globally, with US-based employees receiving notifications by the close of business on Tuesday, according to Bakish. In the memo, he expressed confidence that these adjustments would facilitate the company’s momentum and execution of its strategic vision for the upcoming year.
Amid rumours of Paramount’s heiress Shari Redstone considering selling her stake, talks of a potential merger with Warner Bros. Discovery, led by David Zaslav, and takeover offers from Skydance and RedBird Capital, Paramount declined to comment on the matter.
As Paramount Global navigates a transition from traditional linear television to streaming, it celebrated the success of Super Bowl LVIII. The broadcast garnered an astounding 123.4 million viewers, a historic high since the 1969 moon landing. Bakish, in a Bloomberg TV interview, highlighted the network’s achievement in setting a new high-water mark for Super Bowl ad sales.
Paramount’s workforce reduction aligns with a broader trend in the media industry, with other conglomerates implementing layoffs in 2024. Notable instances include staff cuts at The Los Angeles Times, TIME, and Business Insider in January, along with historic walkouts at Condé Nast, Forbes, and The New York Daily News, protesting impending job reductions.