Vice Media is likely to be sold to a group of buyers that includes Soros Fund Management, one of the enterprises of left-wing billionaire George Soros, according to a new report.
Fortress Investment Group, a senior lender with Vice, also would be in on the deal, which first would involve Vice filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection followed by a sale, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal on Friday.
The Journal estimated the deal to be worth about $400 million, but a report in The Guardian suggested the final valuation on Vice could be between $300 million and $350 million.
In writing about the Soros connection, the Washington Free Beacon noted it would “boost the billionaire’s already enormous influence in left-wing politics and media.”
The Wall Street Journal reported that Vice stockholders — including private-equity firm TPG Group, Sixth Street Partners and media mogul James Murdoch — would be “wiped out under the proposed reorganization.”
The New York Times noted that at its peak, Vice was valued at $5.7 billion.
If the sale takes place as the Journal expects, Vice co-founder Shane Smith would have a role in the company and senior management would be retained.
Vice has been seeking a buyer for almost a year, the Journal reported.
A deal to buy Vice earlier this year fell through.
Vice told employees it planned to close Vice World News, a global reporting project, according to the Times.
The Journal noted that Vice was expected to be a leader in the new-media boom but said digital media has had difficult days of late, citing BuzzFeed’s decision to close its news division, plus job cuts at Vox.
The Journal report indicated that Vice suffered a major blow when Greece’s Antenna Group ended its multimillion-dollar contract to purchase content from Vice.
After that, Fortress came around to the view that it would be more advantageous to go the bankruptcy route instead of hoping a buyer would emerge, the Journal reported.
Good for him. No one is going to watch it.
SOME ONE NEEDS TO PUT THIS UGLY BAG OF BONES IN A CEMENT GRAVE ALONG WITH HIS FAMILY AND INLAWS THE CLINTON. BEST PLACE FOR THEM.