Redstone, Elkes To Work Together In Consumating Viacom Buyout
NEW YORK (AP) _ The president of Viacom International Inc. and the head of the company that won a $3.4 billion bidding war for Viacom said Monday they would work together to complete the merger as quickly as possible.
Terrence Elkes, Viacom’s president and chief executive officer, and Sumner Redstone, president of National Amusements Inc., also said in a joint news release that they believed the company’s goals could be achieved best by ″preserving and indeed expanding its primary business.″
The statement did not indicate whether Elkes planned to remain with the company following the buyout.
Viacom, a major broadcasting and entertainment concern, agreed last week to be acquired by National Amusements in a cash and securities buyout valued at about $3.4 billion.
In accepting the National bid, Viacom turned down a rival offer from an investment group led by Elkes and other senior Viacom management members. The two groups had engaged in a month-long bidding war for the company.
The statement said that in addition to keeping Viacom’s primary businesses, the company would be best served by keeping the Viacom name.
It also said ″Mr. Redstone expressed his hope that the members of Viacom’s management, who have brought Viacom’s business to the point where it is today, would continue to participate in the Company’s operations...′ ′
The statement did not elaborate on whether Elkes planned to remain with the company. Liz Martin, a Viacom spokeswoman, declined to comment on the statement.
Another spokesman, who asked not to be named, said the managements of the two companies were ″basically getting to know each other″ and Elkes hadn’t reached the point of deciding whether he would remain with Viacom.
″Nothing is definite,″ said the spokesman. ″I don’t think he (Elkes) or anyone else has ruled it out. Hopefully Elkes and the others will decide to stay with the company.″