×

With Vice Deal Done, Refinery29 Founders Moving Out of Management Roles

Vice Media Group closed its acquisition of Refinery29 — and Refinery29’s co-CEOs and co-founders Philippe von Borries and Justin Stefano will no longer be involved in day-to-day management at the newly combined company.

In a memo to staff Monday (Nov. 4), Vice Media Group CEO Nancy Dubuc said Stefano (above left) and von Borries (above right) will “continue to help advise the new leadership team as we build a future together. They will step away from their day-to-day operational roles, but their strategic counsel will help deliver on key priorities like expanding R29 internationally, driving platform innovation, and strategic commercial partnerships.”

The closing of the deal comes about a month after Vice announced plans to acquire Refinery29, which targets millennial female audience. With R29, Vice, which undertook belt-tightening layoffs earlier in the year, is looking to gain more scale and improve its ability to reach young women.

Other management changes and updates now that Vice’s acquisition of Refinery29 is complete:

Popular on Variety

  • Piera Gelardi will continue as Refinery29’s executive creative director and Christene Barberich will remain in her role as global editor-in-chief, both reporting to Dubuc.
  • Amy Emmerich, Refinery29’s previously president of North America and chief content officer, will expand her scope to have a global purview, reporting to Dubuc. Emmerich also will lead the 29Rooms experiential business.
  • Kate Ward, formerly president of international for R29, will also report to Dubuc and take on a new role as president of Vice Studios, overseeing Vice’s TV and film production studio, as well content sales distribution. Ward’s role includes her continuing to lead the Refinery29 originals team.
  • Danny Gabai, head of Vice Studios US, will report to Ward and continue to be based out of Los Angeles.
  • George Rogers, previously chief development officer for Refinery29, will move into to a new role as chief client officer reporting directly to Dominique Delport, Vice Media’s president of international and chief revenue officer (who reports to Dubuc). Rogers will oversee partnerships all lines of advertising business globally.
  • Vice veteran exec Hosi Simon, who has been with the company for 13 years most recently as international executive managing director, will become the company’s new COO, reporting to Dubuc. In the expanded role, Simon will oversee international operations and shared services, including production and marketing, across all businesses, as well as oversee emerging businesses globally and special projects.

Dubuc was hired as Vice Media’s CEO a year and a half ago, as co-founder and former chief exec Shane Smith stepped into an executive chairman role. Dubuc, formerly president and CEO of A+E Networks, has faced the task of moving the company toward profitable growth.

Dubuc’s other direct reports remain unchanged: Jesse Angelo, president of global news and entertainment at Vice, who joined from the New York Post this summer; Thomas Benski, CEO of Pulse Films; Danielle Carrig, chief communications officer; Hozefa Lokhandwala, chief strategy officer; Joseph Simon, chief technology officer; Susan Tohyama, chief human resources officer; and Lucinda Treat, chief legal officer.

More Digital

  • Vudu

    NBCUniversal in Talks to Buy Walmart's Vudu

    Comcast’s NBCUniversal is looking to add some Vudu into its streaming-video mix. The media conglomerate is in talks to buy Vudu, the Walmart-owned entertainment rental, download and free-streaming service, sources confirm to Variety. It’s unclear what the terms of the pact would be or the timing. News of NBCU’s interest in Vudu was first reported [...]

  • Tubi

    Fox in Talks to Acquire Free-Streaming Service Tubi for Over $500 Million (Report)

    Fox Corp. is in discussions about acquiring Tubi, the ad-supported free streaming service, in a deal worth more than $500 million, according to a Wall Street Journal report citing anonymous sources. With Tubi, Rupert Murdoch’s TV broadcasting and cable company would be adding a dedicated streaming component — offering over 20,000 older TV shows and [...]

  • Zombies 2 Disney Channel

    How Disney Channel's 'Zombies 2' Production Team Made Monsters Kid-Friendly

    Traditionally spooky creatures like zombies and werewolves get the Disney treatment in “Zombies 2,” the follow-up to the 2018 hit TV-movie musical of the same name. While the undead have now assimilated into the community of Seabrook, they’re confronted by a new set of outsiders: werewolves. Milo Manheim and Meg Donnelly return as Zed and [...]

  • Baby Yoda - The Child Animatronic

    Hasbro's Adorable Baby Yoda Animatronic Toy Is Already Sold Out on Disney's Online Store

    The Force remains strong for toys based on Baby Yoda, the breakout star of Disney Plus original series “The Mandalorian.” Less than a day after becoming available for pre-order, Hasbro’s new $59.99 Baby Yoda animatronic toy is no longer available on Disney’s official online store: As of Friday morning, Shop Disney listed it as “sold [...]

  • BTS Leads Spotify’s New Music Friday

    BTS Leads Spotify’s New Music Friday Playlist Rebrand

    Spotify has launched a global rebrand of its popular New Music Friday playlist, which this week features BTS, The Weeknd, Noah Cyrus, Trippie Redd, Kenny Chesney, Rei Ami and others. The revamped playlist, which has 43 versions worldwide, has more than 3.5 million followers in the US and eight million globally. New elements include a [...]

  • The Witcher - Netflix

    'The Witcher' Season 2 Production Starts in U.K., Adds Seven to Cast Including 'Game of Thrones' Star Kristofer Hivju

    Production on fantasy epic “The Witcher” Season 2 has commenced in the U.K., with a planned launch in 2021, Netflix announced. The show also announced seven new cast members joining “The Witcher” for S2, including Kristofer Hivju, the Norwegian actor who played the red-bearded wilding leader Tormund Giantsbane on “Game of Thrones.” Netflix last month [...]

  • Disney Plus - Vizio

    Disney Plus Is Now on Vizio Smart TVs in Native App

    Disney Plus is available on Vizio’s SmartCast TV platform as a built-in app, making the Mouse House’s subscription-streaming service accessible directly to users of the manufacturer’s 13 million SmartCast-enabled televisions. Previously, Vizio users have been able to stream Disney Plus on SmartCast TVs through Apple AirPlay 2 and Chromecast. But with the Disney Plus update, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content