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Preview Launch of Revamped CBS All Access to Take Place Later This Summer, ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish Says

Torrey Hart

ViacomCBS will launch a preview of its revamped CBS All Access streaming service this summer, with a full rebranded launch at some point in 2021, CEO Bob Bakish said at the Credit Suisse Virtual Communications Conference Tuesday.

Despite taking its share of financial hits during the COVID-19 pandemic, in May, non-executive chairman of ViacomCBS Shari Redstone said the company was “confident” it would execute its strategy “more quickly than anyone expects.” At the time, Bakish added that CBS All Access would eventually include more ViacomCBS brands.

It appears that time has come. Tuesday, Bakish said that the upcoming preview launch will include content from Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and MTV, among other major channels.

“Second part of our strategy is to transform All Access into a super service. Building on the presence All Access has in the market today, and we will have a preview launch of that service later this summer, where we will add content from Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, Smithsonian, MTV, BET and Paramount,” Bakish said. “I think the important point here is that these brands and their content reach 80 percent of viewers under the age of 35. And that should meaningfully expand the market opportunity for us going forward.”

Bakish explained that in its current state, All Access is well-positioned to reach the “older segment,” and that the full relaunch will reach 15,000 hours of additional content over time.

“We do expect a full relaunch of the rebranded service in 2021,” Bakish said. He added that it will include a “broader slate” of original content.

Additionally, Bakish noted that the company will begin to move away from making the “financially attractive” licensing deals it has historically found for its flagship content (like “South Park” on HBO Max), and instead “prioritize franchise IP” to the company’s own platforms.