Viacom CEO: 'We Have the Strategic Scale,' Don't Need to Buy It

6:44 AM PST 08/06/2014 by Georg Szalai

Philippe Dauman says the entertainment company is "in good shape" despite pay TV consolidation and recent deal chatter.

Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman said on Wednesday that the entertainment company is "in good shape" despite pay TV consolidation.

"We have the strategic scale today" that is needed, he said on the firm's quarterly earnings conference call. "We don't have to buy it."

He made the comments after being asked by an analyst if he feels Viacom needs to get bigger amid recent agreements by Comcast to acquire Time Warner Cable and AT&T to buy DirecTV. The analyst asked if Viacom, before the separation from CBS Corp., had more leverage with TV distributors and could look for U.S. deals. 

"We are focused on creating shareholder value," Dauman said, adding that in past consolidation waves, "We have built up a portfolio of networks." Since the split, both Viacom and CBS have "done well," the CEO emphasized.

He touted Viacom's position as the number 1 network group among people ages 2-49, according to Nielsen. Among teens, the company is also number 1, he said in highlighting some market share stats. 

Concluded Dauman: "We are able to do well ... We are in good shape." 

The comments came after Tuesday evening's news that 21st Century Fox had withdrawn its bid for Time Warner amid the latter's opposition. 

Email: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai

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