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ViacomCBS rebrands to Paramount in focus on streaming

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The company wants 100 million subscribers by 2024

ViacomCBS is getting a new name: Paramount.

The media behemoth — which was created through the merger of CBS and Viacom in 2019 — said the rebrand is meant to focus on the company’s goal of becoming a major player in streaming. It is also, plainly, just a better name.

Paramount intends to “turn streaming into a sustainable business for the future,” Paramount CEO Bob Bakish said during an investor event this afternoon, “and know this, we are committed to that future and creating that value.”

The company intends to hit 100 million streaming subscribers by 2024 — up from its previous goal of 65 million to 75 million during the same timeframe. The company plans to further its international expansion and offer mobile-only plans in some regions to hit its aggressive subscription goals. It’ll also start streaming all Paramount movies exclusively on Paramount Plus starting in 2024 in the US, following their theatrical runs.

“We’ve got the passion, the vision, and the discipline to deliver,” Bakish said.

Paramount includes major TV networks, like CBS, Nickelodeon, and MTV; the publisher Simon & Schuster; and its titular film studio. But the company is increasingly focused on streaming, where it has three key brands: Showtime, Pluto TV, and Paramount Plus.

Announcing its fourth-quarter 2021 earnings today, Paramount highlighted the rapid growth of its streaming brands. It now has more than 56 million combined streaming subscribers, and streaming revenue is up 48 percent year over year, hitting $1.3 billion in the holiday quarter. Streaming subscription revenue was up 84 percent, while streaming advertising revenue was up 26 percent.

Paramount announced a huge lineup of upcoming shows and movies headed to its main streaming service to keep that momentum going. That includes a second season of Halo, a Sonic TV series focused on the Idris Elba-voiced Knuckles, and new titles from hits kids properties. There’ll be a Blue’s Clues movie, a Paw Patrol movie sequel and spinoff TV series, a Dora the Explorer revival, and even a Baby Shark movie (though some films will head to theaters first). Taken together, the company is making a major play to become a must-have subscription for families with young kids.