Time Warner Pulls Out Of Deal That Would Have Valued Vice Media At $US2 Billion

Shane Smith of Vice and Pella KagermanYouTube/ViceVice Media CEO Shane Smith

Time Warner has pulled out of a deal that would have given Vice Media a $US2 billion valuation, the New York Times reported Friday.

The deal was supposed to make Time Warner a major stakeholder of Vice Media, who in turn would have gotten control over HLN’s 24-hour news platform and access to its 100 million household viewers.

The report said the deal fell through because they couldn’t agree on Vice Media’s valuation.

Vice is a private company, so it’s never easy to find its exact value. For reference, 21st Century Fox valued Vice at over $US1 billion, when it paid $US70 million for 5% ownership of the digital media company.

Vice’s CEO, Shane Smith, has said in the past that Vice would be worth $US30 billion if it went public, which means it would be worth as much as The New York Times.

While some might argue over that valuation, there’s no question Vice is one of the fastest-growing media companies in the world.

In May, Smith told Business Insider that Vice’s revenue in the first quarter of 2014 had already exceeded that of the whole year of 2013. It is expected to generate $US500 million in revenue this year, and $US1 billion by 2016.

By comparison, Buzzfeed, whose revenue goal this year is $US120 million, was recently valued at about $US850 million, according to multiple reports.

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