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Sony signs NDA with Paramount Global but is reticent about earlier plan

The New York Times said the move was "a significant step forward in their effort to court Paramount"

Sony Pictures and private equity firm Apollo have signed non-disclosure agreements with Paramount Global, according to reports in the New York Times.

The move allows the two companies to view the entertainment conglomerate’s non-public financial information, in what the paper referred to as “a significant step forward in their effort to court Paramount”.

Sony and Apollo had previously tabled an expression of interest in acquiring Paramount Global for $26 billion, but they are now thought to be backing away from a cash deal following shareholder opposition and headwinds facing the subscription streaming business, said the NYT.

Sources told the paper that Sony and Apollo are now contemplating a range of different strategies to acquire the company’s assets. Sony’s vision for the deal may alter the dynamics of Paramount’s effort to sell itself. Controlling shareholder, Shari Redstone, is thought to prefer keeping Paramount intact, but according to the NYT, a breakup of the company would not necessarily be a deal breaker.