The media mogul Shari Redstone is in talks to sell a controlling stake in National Amusements, the parent company of the sprawling news and entertainment empire that includes the Paramount movie studio, CBS and MTV, according to three people familiar with the talks.
In recent weeks, National Amusements has held talks with Skydance, the media and entertainment company founded by David Ellison, who is the son of the billionaire founder of Oracle, Larry Ellison. It’s unclear whether a deal will be reached, and the value the talks place on Ms. Redstone’s stake couldn’t be determined.
A deal for Paramount, if it came to fruition, could be a starting gun for a far-reaching reordering of the media industry over the next year. Comcast, the TV and cable giant that owns NBCUniversal, is on the prowl for deals. Warner Bros. Discovery, the owner of HBO and CNN, in effect, comes on the market later this year because of arcane tax reasons.
Ms. Redstone, 69, who waged a bitter battle with her onetime allies to retain control of the company, now appears to be seriously considering relinquishing it. She has held out for years amid broader headwinds facing the traditional media industry, but is exploring her options now that a serious suitor has expressed interest, two of the people said. Ms. Redstone’s holdings are facing some economic pressures, including long-term debt obligations and the unreliable advertising market for media companies like Paramount.
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