Vice Media Sure Doesn't Have Much Trouble Raising Millions and Millions of Dollars
Vice Media CEO Shane Smith

If there's one thing Vice Media Inc. CEO Shane Smith can do, it's raise money.

The high-energy youth-infused television and digital company has secured $450 million from private equity firm TPG Capital LP, according to a Monday statement. The new infusion of cash increases the total money that Vice has raised from venture capital and media companies to roughly $1.4 billion.

Vice, which Smith co-founded in 1994 as a Montreal fanzine catering to alternative music and culture, is now valued at about $5.7 billion.

Before the TPG financing for closely held Vice, the Brooklyn, N.Y., company had raised nearly $1 billion from Walt Disney Co. (DIS) , Hearst Corp., Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. (FOXA) and Silicon Valley's Technology Crossover Ventures, an early investor in Netflix Inc. (NFLX) and Facebook Inc. (FB) . Vice produces an evening news show for HBO but its parent company, Time Warner Inc. (TWX) , isn't an equity investor in Vice.

TPG's investment comes as Vice continues to expand internationally both in television and online, securing carriage deals with pay-TV operators in Europe, Asia and South America. TPG, which manages more than $70 billion in assets, was an early investor in Uber Technologies Inc. and Airbnb Inc. as well as Spotify Ltd., owner of the world's largest subscription-based music streaming service.

Even after the TPG investment, Disney remains Vice's largest outside stakeholder, dropping slightly below a roughly 19% position following a $400 million investment in late 2015. Hearst's stake in Vice is about 4%, followed by Fox and other investors, including global ad agency WPP plc (WPPGY) .

In its statement Vice said it will use the newest round of funding as much to create new content as continue to build out the tech side of its business. That translates into improving its ability to operate direct-to-consumer platforms even as it strikes distribution deals with Europe's Sky plc, Times of India Group, Moby Group of Afghanistan, France's Canal+ and others.

This latest round of financing begs the question when Vice Media might issue shares to investors eager to buy a piece of one of the world's most intriguing media companies. Vice's revenue totaled between $700 million and $800 million in 2016, while sales this year are expected to reach $1 billion. Vice's international expansion in 2017 called for its television network, Viceland, to be carried in 40 or more countries.

Smith's decision to invest heavily in a television network seems like a counterintuitive bet at a time when most pay-TV services are losing subscribers and media companies are focused on aggregating digital audiences.

Yet Vice's embrace of video is a bet that its brand of hip and irreverent content can distinguish the company from Facebook, Snap Inc. (SNAP) and Alphabet Inc.'s (GOOGL) YouTube. That's important given that Google and Facebook consumed 71% of all U.S. digital advertising sales in the first quarter and 82% of all new digital ad spending, according to data compiled by Pivotal Research Group media analyst Brian Wieser. 

With its latest pile of financing, Vice is expected to continue to focus on video, both digitally and on TV.

Vice declined to comment beyond the statement.

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