The cash will give the company resources to “build up the largest millennial video library in the world – enabling Vice to widen our offering to include news, food, music, fashion, art, travel, gaming, lifestyle, scripted and feature films,” Smith says.
“Building out this wide ranging and rich library of gold standard content will be an essential component of our future Direct to Consumer tech stacks and our innovations in transactional relationships – all of which represent the future of media,” he adds.
Specifically, Vice says that it will use the cash to launch and finance Vice Studios, which will produce “scripted multi-screen programming.” It hopes to become “the go-to home for the next generation of great storytellers in feature films and scripted episodic content across the world.”
In addition, Vice plans to re-invest in its video-driven properties “to broaden the content reach and offerings across every platform, and tap into new revenue opportunities for each of these brands.” And it will build “next generation of products and revenue streams” including direct-to-consumer services.
Last month Sky reported that TPG was “among the frontrunners” to buy the stake in Vice that Smith was shopping. Earlier it said that London-based CVC Capital Partners was interested.
If Smith’s calculation of Vice’s total value is accurate, then it means TPG considers the company to be worth 53% more than AMC Networks, 65% more than Sinclair Broadcast Group, and 73% more than the world’s No. 1 movie chain AMC Entertainment.
“Media is probably at its most dynamic, most evolutionary time in its history,” Smith says. “With Facebook and Google taking an ever-growing piece of the online advertising pie, looming ‘skinny bundles’ and OTT/DTC offerings exploding the media status quo – networks have to be nimble, smart and fast moving.
TPG’s other investments include CAA, Spotify, and Airbnb.
Vice’s assets include 13 digital channels, TV network Viceland, a print magazine, a branded content studio, and HBO’s documentary series Vice and daily news show Vice News Tonight.