It was a particularly shitty morning for Howard Stern and the rest of the former Infinity Radio community as their chief proponent, Mel Karmazin, quit his number 2 job at Viacom then the CEO says your whole line of business is on the auction block.
NEW YORK (AP) – Mel Karmazin resigned suddenly as president and chief operating officer of Viacom Inc. (VIA), owner of CBS, MTV and Nickelodeon, as the media giant seeks to find a successor for its 81-year-old chairman and CEO, Sumner Redstone.
In a conference call with Wall Street analysts, Redstone said Karmazin left because of “frustration” with the company’s sagging stock price and the lingering troubles at the company’s radio division.
Redstone suggested that Viacom’s new management team would consider getting rid of the radio business, saying the company would have a “hard look” at the radio operation as well as other assets. “There is no sacred cow,” Redstone said. “But for the time being we’re committed to radio.”This lead media blogger Jeff Jarvis to frantically post – Karmazin Out… Sell Viacom.
Hopefully you avoided that advice – investors took the news of the management shakeup in stride. In late morning trading, Viacom’s widely held “B” class shares were off 2 cents at $36.87 in heavy trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Viacom stockholders and investors have been down on the performance of Viacom stock for months, claiming that the company was undervalued compared to other media companies.
As for Karmazin, he seems like the logical choice to replace Michael Eisner at Disney. They’ve even got a radio division and could probably scoop up Viacom’s radio assets cheaply with Karmazin at the helm.