Hipster news juggernaut Vice Media is about to gain access to vast new audiences through new content production and distribution partnerships spanning Asia, Africa, the Americas, Australasia and the Middle East. The deals cover mobile, online, and broadcast distribution, including online articles, short and feature-length online video, TV programming and interactive content, among other categories.
The production and distribution deals include partnerships with seven major regional media companies serving audiences in 47 countries around the world, bringing its international reach to 55 countries. Many of the deals call for the creation of original production facilities serving local markets, as well as the expansion of Viceland, the company’s 24-hour TV powerhouse, to dozens of countries in Africa and Asia.
The new partnerships include a joint venture with the Times Group of India, the country’s largest media conglomerate and publisher of the English-language Times of India; the Moby Media Group, serving the Middle East and North Africa; Multi Channels Asia, based in Singapore; Australia’s SBS-TV; Sky New Zealand, and Canada’s Groupe V Media.
As part of Vice’s expansion in India, it will establish local production studios and bring on hundreds of journalists and producers.
The company is hiring outside consultants to ensure content is sensitive to local cultural norms while appealing to these regions’ burgeoning youth audiences. It’s not clear what this will mean for Vice’s notoriously edgy reporting, which is well known for exploring the seedy underside of its subjects, offering hard-eyed views of controversial topics like drugs and prostitution.
Vice previously announced that it is bringing Viceland to France in partnership with Canal Plus, and the U.K. with Sky TV.
Vice has already struck a number of content and production partnerships in the U.S. Last month, for example, it teamed up with ESPN to make shows together and share content from TV channels and digital platforms, including short-form series. Material will also re-air on Vice's new TV channel, Viceland.