A media giant with a massive television portfolio has seen stock prices fall a whopping 50.2% in the past year — a plunge that is outpacing the overall industry decline. The New York Post reports that the stock plunge at Viacom has wiped out $16 billion of the company’s value, as of Tuesday’s close.
Much of Viacom’s media empire consists of cable TV channels, including MTV, VH1, Comedy Central, Spike, Epix, Nickelodeon, TV Land and BET.
“After watching ratings at the company’s MTV, Nickelodeon, Spike and Comedy Central fall more sharply than their peers — with nary a response from Viacom’s executive team — investors are now watching the company’s shares tumble at a faster rate than other media companies,” the Post reports.
The report notes that since Jan. 3, 2006, when Viacom and CBS were split off into separate companies, CBS shares have gained 72% while Viacom is down 2%.
Adding to investors’ nervousness, the report notes, is anxiety over upcoming carriage talks with Dish Networks.
“Investors are concerned that Dish will be able to force Viacom to accept a cheap price — something Viacom will then have to give its other distribution partners,” the Post reports. “In addition, questions are still swirling about how Viacom will replace the popular show hosts Jon Stewart, John Oliver, Stephen Colbert and comedy duo Key and Peele — all of whom exited Comedy Central.”
Other concerns have been noted about Sumner Redstone, the 92-year-old head of the company, along with Viacom President and CEO Philippe Dauman.
We encourage you to click on the link in the first paragraph, above, to read the Post’s full analysis of the Viacom situation.