Bressler Set to Exit Viacom

Feb 1, 2005  •  Post A Comment

Viacom Chief Financial Officer Richard Bressler on Tuesday said he would not renew his employment contract when it expires in March 2006.

Mr. Bressler in a statement said that once Leslie Moonves and Tom Freston were made co-presidents and co-chief operating officers last May, “It became clear to me that they would need to have their own senior management team.” Mr. Bressler agreed to stay on until Viacom finds a replacement CFO.

Indeed, a Banc of America Securities report said that Mr. Bressler and Viacom Chairman Sumner Redstone locked horns in recent months over the details of Viacom’s $8 billion stock buyback as well as Mr. Redstone’s willingness to let the company’s credit rating fall one notch to BBB-minus from A-minus to speed up the stock buyback. In addition, Mr. Bressler was seen as being closely tied to former Viacom President and COO Mel Karmazin, who was ousted last May.

Mr. Bressler joined Viacom in March 2001 from AOL Time Warner, where he held the title of executive VP and CFO and CEO of AOL Time Warner Investments.