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Vice Media to stop publishing on its website, lay off 'several' hundreds

Vice Media's CEO, Bruce Dixon, said that it was no longer cost-effective for Vice to distribute digital content, including news

Vice Media, vice media layoffs

In 2017, Vice Media was valued at $5.7 billion

Raghav Aggarwal New Delhi

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Vice Media will no longer publish content on its website, vice.com, and lay off "several hundred" people from its staff of over 900 employees over the next week, according to a report by the Associated Press (AP) citing a memo to staff by the company's chief executive officer Bruce Dixon.

Dixon said that it was no longer cost-effective for Vice to distribute digital content, including news, and that now the company would lay more emphasis on the other channels of distribution.

This is the latest sign of financial problems plaguing the media industry. Almost all big legacy media brands like The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Vox Media and The Los Angeles Times have announced job cuts. On the other hand, digital platforms like Messenger, BuzzFeed News and Jezebel have shut down in the US.

Vice had filed for bankruptcy in the US last year. It also announced the shutdown of its Asia bureau. Later, the media company was sold for $350 million to a consortium led by Fortress Investment Group. Its participants included Soros Fund Management and Monroe Capital.

At its peak in 2017, Vice Media was valued at $5.7 billion.

Vice Media's roots date back to 1994, with the launch of Vice's original punk magazine in Montreal. Vice soon moved to New York and built itself into a global media company.

Over the years, Vice developed a reputation for in-your-face journalism, covering daring stories worldwide. The media company's assets also include film and TV production, an in-house marketing agency, and brands such as Refinery 29 and Unbothered.

In the memo, Dixon also mentioned that the company plans to sell Refinery 29, its women-focused publishing division.

"I know that saying goodbye to our valued colleagues is difficult and feels overwhelming, but this is the best path forward for Vice as we position the company for long-term creative and financial success," Dixon said.

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First Published: Feb 23 2024 | 9:28 AM IST

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