Vice Media is reportedly in talks to be acquired by longtime commercial partner Antenna Group.
US reports suggest the company has been exploring sale options since abandoning plans to go public via a merger with 7GC & Co Holdings last year. The Wall Street Journal also previously reported talks between Vice and Group Black.
Antenna Group, formerly known as ANT1 Group, is the largest Greek media company and has a presence in CEE. It has been partnered with Vice since 2014, and distributes its programming across Greece, Romania, Serbia, and the Balkans.
While Vice was once valued at $5.7bn, the company has struggled to recover publicly since an New York Times (NYT) feature exposed a culture of male entitlement that included allegations of sexual harrassment. This led co-founder Shane Smith to move from CEO to a more hands-off executive chairman role. One of its other co-founders, Gavin McInnes, was the founder of American far-right neo-fascist organisation the Proud Boys.
Since the 2018 NYT report, Vice has refocused its efforts towards video under former A+E Networks CEO Nancy Dubuc. Its most prized assets now include Vice Studios, which produced Oscar-nominated documentary Flee, and Gangs Of London producer Pulse Films. It also owns creative ad agency Virtue, lifestyle publisher Refinery29 and TV network Vice TV which is distributed to more than 60 million homes.