Viacom Submits Details of Split to SEC

Oct 5, 2005  •  Post A Comment

Media giant Viacom submitted long-awaited details Wednesday of its planned split into two companies, but the additional details failed to move the company’s stock price much.

The company submitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission a 315-page filing that spells out how the company will split its cable and broadcast assets into two separately traded companies. For each share of the current company, stockholders will receive a half-share of stock in the new Viacom and a half-share of CBS Corp.

The new Viacom will consist mainly of the assets of MTV Networks and Paramount Pictures, while CBS will comprise the broadcast network, television production operations, Infinity Radio and all publishing assets. The new Viacom will trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbols VIA and VIAB, while CBS will trade as CBS and CBSA.

Following the split, current Viacom co-Presidents Tom Freston and Leslie Moonves will head up the new Viacom and CBS, respectively, with Viacom Chairman and CEO Sumner Redstone retaining the same title at both companies.

Despite the details, the filing did not give a date by which Viacom officials expected the split to be completed. Most Viacom executives have said the breakup will take place sometime in the first half of 2006.

The company announced in March that it is splitting itself into two separately traded companies as a way to jump-start Viacom’s stock price, which has languished for months. But the news hasn’t helped the stock, which is down more than $2 since the March announcement.