American-Canadian youth broadcaster Vice Media has formally filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in New York to facilitate its sale.
The company has listed assets and liabilities of between $500 million and $1 billion, according to news service Reuters.
Vice’s brands include Vice News, Vice TV, Vice Studios, Pulse Films, Virtue, Refinery29 and iD.
The company’s largest creditor, Fortress Investment Group, will come under new ownership. Also including Soros Fund Management and Monroe Capital, the lending syndicate will invest approximately $225 million in loan offerings for nearly all of the company’s assets.
The sale should be completed in about two to three months. Day-to-day operations are unaffected by the bankruptcy filing, with more than $20 million from the loan syndicate, plus the proceeds from its businesses, “will be more than enough to finance the business throughout the sale process.”
“Vice serves a broad global audience with a unique brand of news, entertainment and lifestyle content,” said Dixon and Lokhandwala, Co-CEOs of VICE in a statement. “This expedited court-supervised sales process will strengthen the company and position Vice for long-term growth, thus safeguarding the kind of authentic journalism and content creation that make Vice such a trusted brand for young people and a partner so valuable to brands, agencies and platforms.
“We will have new ownership, a simplified capital structure and the ability to operate without the pre-existing liabilities weighing down on our business. We look forward to completing the sales process over the next two to three months and charting a healthy and successful next chapter at Vice.”
SBS has already lost Vice news tonight, while a spokesperson said: “There are currently no impacts for SBS. The SBS VICELAND channel is a curated mix of programming including content selected by SBS from Vice, along with a number of other providers, and we have the flexibility to respond to programming and scheduling changes when needed.
Australian Vice personnel were also affected.
Pedestrian Group, Nine’s youth arm, also draws on Vice’s content.