Viacom, P&G ink cross-media pact

Brands to launch across 12 of conglom's TV properties

Viacom said Thursday it inked a landmark cross-media marketing pact with giant Procter & Gamble worth about $300 million.

The deal, struck with the conglom’s cross-platform sales and marketing unit Viacom Plus, will launch P&G brands across 12 Viacom TV properties in the U.S., including CBS, MTV and MTV2, VH1, Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite, CMT, BET, UPN, Paramount Television, King World and Comedy Central.

The news boosted Viacom stock by 3.4% to $58.85 as Wall Streeters lauded the move as innovative and symbolic of the direction of the ad market. “The event underscores the shift from a CPM-based advertising system to an integrated marketing one,” said UBS Warburg’s Christopher Dixon.

Cross-media deals offer advertisers one-stop shopping to pump their brands across a full range of assets. Viacom Plus, formerly CBS Plus, was launched in 1998 and has completed 19 smaller deals to date, company said.

New way of doing biz

The agreement “puts us at the forefront of a new way of doing business,” said Viacom chief operating officer Mel Karmazin. It “gives Viacom an expanded relationship with P&G and a media investment otherwise unattainable through regular and segmented upfront selling.”

Procter & Gamble markets approximately 300 brands to nearly 5 billion consumers in more than 140 countries.

“This agreement is about forging better ways to approach our business. It is not about pricing or annual upfront confrontations. It is about defining the next generation of relationships between media owners, marketers and media agencies,” said Donna Salvatore, CEO of MediaVest USA, which helped P&G craft the deal.

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