ViacomCBS Dives as Merger Growing Pains Hit Hard

© Reuters.

By Kim Khan – Sometimes together isn’t always better.

ViacomCBS Inc. (NASDAQ:) showed Wall Street it still has lots of wrinkles to iron out, as its first earnings report as a combined company had shareholders heading for the exits.

Shares fell 17% in midday trading.

ViacomCBS reported an adjusted of 97 cents per share on revenue of $6.87 billion, down 3.1% from the year-ago period.

Analysts were looking for a profit of $1.40 per share on revenue of $5.63 billion, according to forecasts compiled by

Looking ahead, the company said it predicts earnings of $5.15 to $5.50 per share, well shy of the S&P Capital IQ consensus of $5.97 per share.

ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish noted the company faced “a significant set of merger-related items that were a headwind for expenses and cash flow” and was in a transitional period.

Part of the plan is further emphasis on streaming, led by its flagship service CBS All Access, which along with Showtime is on track to have 16 million subscribers at the end of 2020, the company revealed.

ViacomCBS said its streaming and digital video segment pulled in revenue of $1.6 billion last year.

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