Meet Nancy Dubuc, New CEO Of Vice Media

Meet Nancy Dubuc, New CEO Of Vice Media

Nancy Dubuc has been named CEO of Vice Media, a digital media and broadcasting company with a reputation for supporting a “boys’ club” culture that has secured $1.4 billion in funding from major media and private-equity backers.

Vice has been trying to control damage caused by sexual assault and harassment complaints, New York Times reported in December.

The former CEO of a A&E Networks, Dubuc announced on Monday that she was stepping down after 20 years with A&E, Variety reported.

Dubuc’s appointment as new CEO will allow Vice Media co-founder Shane Smith to focus on a new role as executive chairman.

“She is better than me at everything,” Smith said in a statement. “It allows me to move to Executive Chairman, where I can concentrate on the only things that I am good at — content and deals. As we go forward, Vice needs a best-in-class management team to harness all of this growth and control our own destiny, whether it be staying independent, strategically partnering with someone or going public. I get to work with one of my best friends and media heroes.”

From Variety. Story by Cynthia Littleton

The transition comes as Vice has experienced some growing pains and some behind-the-scenes tumult amid allegations of questionable conduct among senior executives at the hard-charging digital content firm.

Dubuc was already a Vice board member and had a relationship with Smith and others through the Viceland cable channel launched in partnership with A+E Networks in early 2016. She moves from cable to the digital-centric Vice at a time of seismic transitions for the traditional pay-TV business. The past few years have been rocky for the core A+E Networks channels: A&E Network, History, and Lifetime. The long-term business forecast for those and other established cable brands is cloudy at best as consumers flock to Netflix and streaming alternatives to traditional pay TV.

“Shane and the team at Vice have done what all of us aspire to do — build a brand and make content that people really care about,” Dubuc said. “Vice speaks to a generation that defines today’s cultural conversation, and the opportunity to partner with all of the incredibly creative people across the entire company was one of those rare moments in a career. As the next chapter of media is written by founders such as Shane and (Vice co-founder) Suroosh Alvi, it’s an honor to join a brand with such tremendous opportunity and I look forward to growing the platform for decades to come.”

Shane Smith has led Vice since the company launched a punk-scene print magazine in Montreal in 1994. Today, the Brooklyn-based company is a global media conglomerate, valued at $5.7 billion and operating in more than 30 countries. Vice’s business encompasses 18 news and lifestyle websites; the Viceland channel; TV shows including HBO’s “Vice News Tonight”; print magazines; a film studio; and a record label.

Dubuc comes on board as Vice’s CEO as it continues an aggressive international expansion strategy and on the heels of 2017 marking its best year to date for revenue generation and digital traffic.

However, Vice missed its revenue target of $805 million last year by more than $100 million, primarily because of revenue shortfall for Viceland, per a Wall Street Journal report. (The privately held company doesn’t disclose financial info.) Last July, Vice laid off about 60 staffers, representing 2% of its total workforce, which the company said was part of shifting staff resources toward video production and international divisions.

Meanwhile, Dubuc also joins Vice in the wake of sex-harassment scandals that have resulted in the firings of several male execs, including chief digital officer Mike Germano. Vice has taken several steps in response to allegations of a toxic workplace culture, including committing to achieving a 50-50 ratio of male and female employees by 2020.

To fuel its growth, Vice has landed a total of $1.4 billion in funding from major media and private-equity backers, including Disney, A+E Networks, 21st Century Fox, TPG, WPP, and Raine Group.

Read more at Variety.