Vice Media Group has announced the closing of its Refinery29 acquisition and changes to its top management team.
The Vice-Refinery deal, worth a reported $400 million, is one of several examples lately of consolidation in the digital media sector, as Facebook and Google continue to pose a stiff challenge in the advertising arena.
Refinery29 Co-Founders and Co-CEOs Philippe von Borries and Justin Stefano will step away from day-to-day operations into advisory roles with the new leadership team, Vice said. Co-Founder Christene Barberich, meanwhile, will continue her role as Global Editor-in-Chief, and Refinery29 and Co-Founder Piera Gelardi will be Executive Creative Director of Refinery29.
Kate Ward, formerly international chief of Refinery29, will become president of Vice Studios, overseeing Vice’s feature film and television production studio as well as leading the Refinery29 Originals team. She will consolidate all content developed around the world across scripted and unscripted, TV and film. With a successful track record that includes the upcoming feature film The Report, Danny Gabai will continue as Head of Vice Studios U.S. and report to Ward.
Amy Emmerich will expand her duties as Global President & Chief Content Officer of Refinery29, reporting to Dubuc. Refinery29, according to the announcement, “will remain a distinct brand with a dedicated team and distinct voice” while looking to expand its footprint globally. She will continue to shepherd R29 Originals and experiential brand extension 29Rooms.
Hosi Simon, a 13-year veteran of Vice, will become Chief Operating Officer. He will oversee international operations, shared services including production and marketing, across VICE’s five lines of business – Studios, Television, Digital, News and Virtue as well as Pulse Productions, i-D and Garage.
George Rogers, formerly Chief Development Officer at Refinery, will become Chief Client Officer, reporting directly to Dominique Delport, President, International and Chief Revenue Officer. Rogers will oversee partnerships across all lines of our advertising business globally.
In addition to Ward, Simon and Emmerich, Dubuc’s direct reports include: Jesse Angelo, President Global News and Entertainment; Thomas Benski, CEO of Pulse Films; Danielle Carrig, Chief Communications Officer; Dominique Delport, President, International and Chief Revenue Officer; Hozefa Lokhandwala, Chief Strategy Officer; Joseph Simon, Chief Technology Officer; Susan Tohyama, Chief Human Resources Officer; and Lucinda Treat, Chief Legal Officer.
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