The version I read was a little of both. Paramount was looking to re-energise Trek, and previously when Abrams had signed a production deal with Paramount he was asked what properties he was interested in. He said 'Mission: Impossible' and 'Star Trek'. He was given the first and made (IMO the joint best M:I film - joined with the first). So a bit later when Paramount were looking for someone to take Trek on, he was approached by them and he accepted, on the conditions he had final cut on the film, creative freedom (subject to some conditions by Paramount) etc. The deal was then done. That's the version I was aware of.
But obviously financial success is a factor, the film is being part funded by his production company so clearly he as well as Paramount will be looking for financial return. I can't count 'they're only in it for the money' as a specific to Trek criticism because at the end of the day that's why studios make films - to make even more money.