>> It's the kind of boardroom brawl that's rarely been seen before. The battle between Shari Redstone and the board of CBS escalated Friday into an all out corporate battle royale. The media company cancelled its annual shareholder meeting less than 24 hours after its board overwhelmingly decided to slash Redstone's voting power.
Her family controls a majority stake in CBS through National Amusements and is pushing for a merger with the other media property it controls, Viacom. Reuters media correspondent Jessica Toonkel says the legal battles are far from over and so is the acrimony between Redstone and CBS top executive Les Moonves.
>> I don't see a world where Les Moonves says okay, I'll merge with Viacom, let's do this deal. I mean, if Shari wins, she's kind of in a position where she has to get rid of Les and the board, and that's tough, right? Because investors want Les to run the company.
If she loses, she loses voting control.>> The showdown all centers on the proposed reunification of two companies that were put together and then split apart by Shari's father, media mogul Sumner Redstone. Shari says the merger is a must to take on Netflix and other media disrupters. But a special board committee at CBS isn't happy with the proposed merger since Viacom is no longer the media powerhouse it used to be.
The legal fight has repercussions beyond just CBS, Viacom and the Redstones. It puts a negative spotlight on so called multiple class shares, where company founders tend to have outsized voting power over ordinary shareholders. Some of the more popular companies with multi-tiered ownership Snap, Facebook, Alphabet parent Google, Liberty Media, Comcast, Under Armour and Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway.