Trying to Sell the Business

Vice Media announced in a memo this week that it would lay off hundreds of employees in preparation for the sale.

Media deputy CEO Bruce Dixon said in a company-wide email that the decision to lay off “hundreds” of staff was not taken lightly.

“This decision was not made lightly,” Dixon wrote.

Dixon added that staff members who have been laid off will be notified of next steps next week.

The memo said Refinery 29, another Vice-owned brand, “will continue to operate as an independent, diversified digital publishing business, creating engaging, social-first content.”

“As you are aware, we are in advanced discussions to sell this business and continue that process. We will be announcing further details in the coming weeks,” Dixon said.

As Breitbart News reported last May, Vice had announced plans to file for bankruptcy after being valued at $5 billion in deals with major corporations. This was revealed by two sources familiar with the situation. new york times Vice last year said it had been looking for a potential buyer that could help it avoid filing for bankruptcy, but no such buyer has emerged yet.every report:

The company is looking for a buyer to avoid declaring bankruptcy, and may still find one. More than five companies have expressed interest in acquiring Vice, according to people briefed on the talks. But one of the people familiar with the possibility of bankruptcy said it was becoming increasingly unlikely.

The bankruptcy filing would be the dark end to the checkered saga of Vice, the media infiltrator that sought to supplant the media establishment before convincing it to invest hundreds of millions of dollars. In 2017, a round of funding from private equity firm TPG valued Vice at $5.7 billion. But today, from most perspectives, that value is only a fraction of that.

If Vice were to go bankrupt, Fortress Investment Group, Vice’s largest debtor, could take control of the company, one of the people said. Vice will continue business as usual and will hold a 45-day auction to sell the company, with Fortress in pole position as the most likely buyer.

Fortress has senior debt and will be the first company to receive payment in the sale. The person acknowledged that companies such as Disney and Fox that invested in Vice are unlikely to make a profit.

As even mainstream media has reported, Vice has faced a series of turbulent challenges over the years as it grew from just a punk magazine to a global news organization with deals with HBO and its own movie studio. Ta.For example, in 2017, the company Paused He is in charge of a documentary program that is amidst allegations of sexual harassment during the height of #MeToo.

Former deputy Los Angeles bureau chief Kai Larsen also accused of sexual harassment according to In response to a Daily Beast article in which current and former employees claimed that Vice had a “dirty and toxic culture.”

VICE Co-Founder and Executive Chairman Shane Smith and VICE CEO Nancy Dubuc attend VICE NewFronts 2019 at Jinfong Restaurant in New York City on May 1, 2019. (Craig Barritt/Getty Images for VICE Media)

In 2015, Disney considered buying Vice after investing millions of dollars in the company, but the deal fell through, two people said. times. In 2018, Shane Smith resigned as Deputy Media CEO and was replaced by Nancy Dubuc. Nancy Dubuc resigned from her position last year after five years with the company.

Vice News Editor-in-Chief Josh Visser said on a conference call Thursday that company executives have given no indication that the website will be shut down, calling the situation “very upsetting.”

“I don’t know anything more than you guys, other than I can read faces and notice when people aren’t responding to messages,” Visser said. Saidby hollywood reporter.

“The removal of our website and our work is completely reprehensible…I don’t even understand the business reason why someone would do something like that,” he added.

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