ViacomCBS moves international operations under US-based trio

Chris McCarthy

ViacomCBS has restructured its international operations, with US-based trio Chris McCarthy, Brian Robbins and George Cheeks taking on new global remits.

The overhaul, which comes just two weeks since the US giant handed the three execs oversight of streamer Paramount+, will see McCarthy and Robbins promoted to become president & CEO of MTV Entertainment Group and Nickelodeon, respectively.

Cheeks become president & CEO at CBS, with an expanded role to include responsibility for a global content strategy across ViacomCBS’ FTA networks around the world. These include the UK’s Channel 5, Australia’s Network 10 and Telefe in Argentina.

Dan Cohen

McCarthy, Robbins and Cheeks will continue to report to Bob Bakish, ViacomCBS’s president & CEO, and work with Raffaele Annecchino, who has led ViacomCBS Networks International (VCNI) since the exit of David Lynn last year.

Cohen’s distribution growth

The company is also rejigging its sales operation, with Dan Cohen, president of ViacomCBS Global Distribution Group, adding distribution of ViacomCBS International Studios content to his group’s mandate – essentially handing him reigns to all ViacomCBS content licensing and distribution globally.

Barbara Zaneri, who had been EVP of global acquisitions, has also been handed a new remit that sees her leading all acquisitions globally across linear, streaming and pay TV. Zaneri, who is now chief programme acquisitions officer, continues to report to McCarthy.

It remains to be seen how international chiefs will be affected, although ViacomCBS said they would be “realigned” under the new structure. It is not immediately apparent if anyone is exiting as a result of the changes.

Bakish said the changes, which are the latest in a series of reshuffles as ViacomCBS focuses on streaming, would “enable a truly global approach to brand management, content acquisitions and licensing across ViacomCBS’ networks around the world.”

He added: “With a global reach of 4.1 billion cumulative homes in over 180 countries, our globally aligned leadership structure will ensure that our internationally recognised brands and content are ubiquitous across every platform and every market.”

Read Next