Vice Media Laying Off 2% of Staff Amid International, Video Expansion (EXCLUSIVE)

Shane Smith Vice layoffs
Stewart Cook/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

Vice Media is laying off about 2% of its 3,000 employees across multiple departments while at the same time the company is looking expand internationally and ramp up video production, Variety has learned.

The layoffs of about 60 staffers are taking place Friday, according to a source familiar with the situation. The cutbacks affect personnel in sales, branded content, editorial and corporate areas in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

A Vice rep confirmed the layoffs but declined to comment further.

The cuts come after Vice last month announced $450 million in funding from private-equity firm TPG, which it said would help fund its international expansion and the launch of Vice Studios — marking a new push into original scripted programming. The TPG investment gives Brooklyn-based Vice an estimated valuation of $5.7 billion, according to CEO Shane Smith.

Even with the layoffs this week, Vice expects overall headcount to increase in the near future with its international expansion and growth in video-content production.

The company is aiming to be operating in more than 80 countries by the first quarter of 2018 and has signed distribution deals with partners worldwide. As part of that, Vice is opening offices in Mumbai and Dubai in the next few months and plans to staff up in other countries where it’s already operating, including Brazil.

In new and existing markets, Vice will hire staff for increased video production, according to the source. That will be for both nonscripted content and for Vice Studios, which is focused on scripted entertainment for TV, film, mobile and digital platforms.

As part of the staffing changes, Vice’s online arts, culture and nightlife coverage that appear on its Thump and Creators channels will move to the main site, according to the source. Vice Sports will remain independent but will shift to a greater focus on video.

Last year, the company restructured Vice News, cutting employees in the U.S. and the U.K. but hiring others as it consolidated news operations under Josh Tyrangiel, the ex-Bloomberg content chief  who had originally  been hired to oversee Vice’s nightly news show for HBO.

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  1. JMV says:

    Oh great, another “news” company adding more “original scripted programming” to an already SATURATED marketplace. Only with more neckbeards, presumably. Once Millennials GROW UP and realize that EVERYTHING Vice feeds them is either being covered by long standing mainstream content providers (hell, even PRINT media!) or has already been covered by other documentarians in less dumbed-down, biased fashion, Vice will just end up one more repository of hipster “journalism” no one references for anything.

    • Strabo says:

      You do realise that Millenials are “grown up”? Millenial means a group that’s now 17-37 years old. The age when the older parts of the subgroup enters the decision making positions in companies and the younger join(ed) the workforce – as much as there is any joining left that is.

  2. “The TPG investment gives Brooklyn-based Vice an estimated valuation of $5.7 billion.”

    Seriously? Based on what?

  3. Equinox K says:

    Most of you commenting on here are certifiably insane. Like most of the things you all are saying doesn’t make sense. Just go back over to Fox News and stop pissing your pants.

  4. John Devereaux says:

    It’s common knowledge that most Vice “employees” are Trustafarians – so probably the people they sacked were the actual qualified people who they were paying to make way for more trust funded chinless wonders.

    • Patty Barry says:

      Vice used to independent, before HBO co-opted them, and others–they sold their soul for a pile of gold–and now they seem like a tool of the Left–can’t respect that. I quit watching them, though I highly recommend pre-HBO shows if you can find them!

  5. Jose Deleon says:

    get rid of all these morons, they don’t do any good, just instigators.

  6. Allah_speaking says:

    A 2% cut is just the beginning.

  7. anonymous says:

    Who cuts staff when expanding lol? I don’t think those two go together…

    That said, here’s what I think of Vice: SO CREEPY & WEIRD. It really is. I tried watching a few times and it’s like a channel that scouts the ends of this country for the worst in society – from pornographic/pervert type things to murderer people things – and then tries to present it as “This is America.” When the reality is no, people like that are not America – people like that are just the .001% of creeppy freakazoids that unfortunately live on the fringes of every society. The 99.999% of wonderful, normal, sweet people of America are what are reflective of America!

    But anyways therefore, by being a channel that looks for the worst in society & by being a channel whose whole premise is a lie, this channel will be out of business soon. This channel is doing extremely poorly for a reason! And just as with the reality of Lena Dunham’s viewership numbers, no amount of glamorous executive profiles in Forbes & PR-hype will change the hard cold facts.

    P.S. To any executive of Hollywood reading, please top promoting weird people & channels like this in the name of “millennials.” You want to make weird things to promote some weird society destroying agenda that you mindlessly believe being on the ins with makes you an intellectual, that’s on you. But clearly most millenials in America don’t like things like this & are watching reruns of old 90s shows/movies instead of tuning into crud like this for a reason. You’re literally losing money for a reason. Wake up.

    • Strabo says:

      They probably cut staff that was long with the company and thus expensive. Why pay a 40 year old 150k a year when you can get a twentysomething to do it for 70k?

  8. Bob S says:

    Good. Vice is reprehensible, dumbing down millenials everywhere!

  9. charlesamiller says:

    VICE is going to lay off a lot more than 2% in the (near) future. It’s a bad concept with lousy programming.

  10. JT says:

    The Truth always catches up with the best of lies !

  11. Wharfplank says:

    Rot in hell, Vice.

  12. I call that a good start.98 percent more to go.

  13. Brandon says:

    I just don’t get all the Right Wing having such strong opinions about something that they say doesn’t affect them. Maybe if they didn’t live in mammals basement their life could have meaning.

  14. Fred Mertz says:

    Wow, this little group of right wing trolls circle jerk themselves into stupor as usual on the Variety comments page. None of you work in the film or television industry. Why don’t you all haul ass back to the nearest Chuck E Cheeze. Your parents are about to leave without you.

    • Bob S says:

      Is your man bun hurting Freddy?

    • Rzzzz says:

      We don’t care that you work in film or television. All that tells us is that you are the enemy…..

    • Frank says:

      hear hear

    • Bill Jefferson says:

      So, Freddie, you won’t understand why you lost 2018, bigly, either – will you?

    • Kaboom! says:

      So much hate, you make the left look even worse. So what if some of them may not work in the industry, but at least they work. As for VICE, I’m surprised they only let 2% go, their financials indicate they need to let 50% go. But finances are not your bailiwick, actually nothing is.

      • BigBalls says:

        he doesn’t have a job and hasn’t found his ‘partner’ yet

      • JT says:

        I’d gladly spend my coin at Chuck E. Cheese before wasting it on the film and television propaganda industry, feel free to continue groveling to Chinese investors………..Sad-Sack, Ha,ha,ha !!!

      • falconflight says:

        So filthy, so unable to debate…you must debase. You have no reason…

  15. Jamesben says:

    Vice is PURE GARBAGE and I’m still p.o.ed History2 was killed and replaced with Vice.

    Unwatchable tripe marinated in puke.

  16. Rzzzz says:

    Good riddance,,,,,

  17. Amos says:

    Aren’t you fortunate!

  18. anon says:

    Who is funding the rest of the 98% of this trash?

  19. Carl Wilson says:

    Vice was never the same after Gavin McInnes left.

  20. Olden Atwoody says:

    “Vice Media Laying Off 2% of Staff”

    Only 2%? Should be 80%. What useless trash.

  21. Boxcar Willie says:

    Vice was worthless, they wandered about warming themselves over any warm grate or boxcar.Vice will not be missed, who are they?

  22. Gerhardt says:

    I don’t support any enterprise named Vice, Sin, Drunk, Whoore, Syphillis or the like.Good day.

  23. Vince says:

    Oh no!, not Vince, he was just getting started.

  24. The leftist views are generally well veiled, but the descending ratings will continue as the viewing audience has had it’s fill of anti-right rants. The shows are edgy and often interesting, but the crude language and offbeat characters cause a large viewership to put the cable station on the “no fly” list, especiall for kids.

  25. TJ Wyatt says:

    ….and I should care because?

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