Recently, Paramount has been going through a major upheaval following Skydance and Sony both putting in offers to buy out the company following the legacy studio suffering from the effects of the shift from linear to streaming and overall changes within the entertainment business.

While neither of those bids to buy Paramount were accepted by Shari Redstone, who owns the majority of the shares in Paramount, the company is now moving forward with plans to transform its business. 

One key aspect that Paramount’s new CEOs are focusing on is their streaming business, as while Paramount+ has over 70 million subscribers worldwide, the division is losing hundreds of millions of dollars each quarter, which isn’t something the company can sustain and is looking to make changes. 

Last year, Paramount+ was merged with Showtime, and just this past week, Paramount began wiping out most of its online content from its own websites like Comedy Central and MTV, pushing people to subscribe to Paramount+ for that content.

There have been reports over the past few months that Paramount was looking to partner with Comcast, like it has done in many countries across Europe, with their SkyShowtime platform.

However, now, according to CNBC, it looks like a deal could be on the cards with Warner Brothers Discovery, as apparently, the two legacy studios are now in talks about a potential merger between Paramount+ and Max.  Paramount is also in active discussions with other media and tech companies to see if a deal can be made to merge Paramount+  with another streaming entity that could potentially be co-owned by Paramount.

With the streaming wars taking its toll on many of the major studios, the idea that every studio could launch a streaming service and it would be a success is now no longer a reality.  Chasing Netflix’s subscriber numbers is just costing too much money for these studios, having spent billions on building new technology, forgoing licensing money, reduced box office and creating original content.   The studios have all begun scaling back their plans.

Warner Brothers Discovery had discussions earlier this year with Paramount about a potential merger, but it didn’t go anywhere, but this new partnership would help both studios compete on a grander scale.

Earlier this year, it was revealed that Disney and Warner Brothers Discovery were teaming up on two different projects, including Venu Sports, which is a new sports streaming service with Fox and a new bundle that would offer Disney+, Max and Hulu together.

Should Paramount+ and Max merge together, this could also mean Paramount content could be available within this bundle, too.  Though Disney hasn’t announced any plans on its bundle with Max and Venu Sports yet.

One of the biggest problems facing streaming services now is churn, as people have started to scale back how many streaming services they are subscribed to, since the streaming boom of the pandemic is now behind us. Since people have less time to watch TV, but more importantly, less money to pay for multiple platforms.

Paramount held an employee town hall event last week, where the company’s co-CEO, Chris McCarthy, is also considering partnering with a technology platform:

“What they don’t have is our scale of content, and together we will make for a very powerful combination to drive more minutes and greater profits,”

During that same town hall event, Chris spoke about the benefits of merging its streaming platforms with Warner or Comcast.

“The sheer volume of hit content that we could offer together would be tremendous across TV, film and sports, and would attract millions of viewers. Plus, we would share in all other non-content expenses.”  

Having a combined Paramount+ with either Peacock or Max, could help reduce costs for the two legacy studios, plus a combined offering would increase engagement and advertising revenue.  

I do hope that Disney and Paramount have at least had some discussions about a potential option of working together, but I doubt Disney is looking to spend billions of dollars on content when it’s trying to sort out the buyout of Hulu from Comcast and going on a cost-cutting spree to reduce spending.

Roger’s Take:  There are simply too many streaming services, and they aren’t all going to make it, especially Paramount+.  While the studio has some incredible franchises and a vast library.   It feels a little bit like Paramount is scratching around, looking for a way forward, as running their own platform isn’t going to work in the long run.  They could go with the Sony approach of just licensing out its content on a case-by-case basis or just doing a huge deal for everything.  But it does seem like they still want some skin in the game, with some ownership of a streaming platform.  Either way, I don’t think I’ll be renewing my annual subscription to Paramount+, as I’m not convinced it will still be there in a year’s time!

Do you think Max and Paramount+ should merge?  Let me know on social media!

For the latest Disney+ news, follow us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram.

Roger Palmer

Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom. Email: Twitter: Facebook:

Related Article