Today’s news that Tom Dooley will be stepping down from his post as interim CEO of Viacom is leading to the inevitable chatter over who’ll get the permanent post. While there has been speculation that an outsider such as former Fox chief Jim Gianopulos or former DWA chief Jeffrey Katzenberg, Peter Chernin or Les Moonves would be ideal fits, sources say Shari Redstone is looking to make the hire from within.
My oddsmakers have established two favorites in this horse race: Bob Bakish, the president/CEO of Viacom International, and Viacom CFO Wade Davis. There is strong sentiment that Davis has a good shot here, for keeping stability and unlocking revenue in the digital realm, which is key to any of these guys getting top jobs in the future. Insiders say that Viacom International has turned in a strong performance as well, which reflects well on Bakish. Dooley will exit November 15, so this race will happen soon. We’ll keep you posted.