After months of speculation, Rogers has officially terminated its partnership with Vice for Vice Studio Canada and the Viceland television station. Vice has also acquired full ownership of its studio business as well as Viceland’s content library.
The Viceland television station will also cease broadcasting on March 31st, 2018, according to a January 22nd, 2018 media release. The station’s programming will continue to be available on Vice.com. It’s unclear if the version of the channel that’s broadcast through U.S. exclusive streaming platform SlingTV will also continue.
The Globe and Mail’s Christine Dobby previously reported in November 2017 that Rogers had plans to end its support for the station, as well as the joint studio with Vice.
According to the Globe’s report, Viceland’s ratings have been low, and the station has failed to generate enough income to serve as a meaningful return on Rogers’ investment.
Prior to this partnership termination, Rogers owned a 70 percent stake in the Viceland channel, according to Cartt editor and publisher Greg O’Brien.
Rogers is the 70 percent owner of the Viceland channel in Canada. It is a Rogers venture. Either Vice buys out Rogers or Rogers shuts the channel down.
— Greg O'Brien (@gregobr) November 29, 2017
Rogers and Vice first announced their partnership in 2014, for a $100 million CAD, three-year deal. Viceland posted a $2.49 million loss for the 12 months ending on August 31st, 2016.
Additionally, subscriber fees declined by 19 percent to $4.675 million.
“As we build VICE into the preeminent home for today’s most impactful storytellers and bring those stories to viewers across the world though digital, mobile, and our award-winning studio, keeping Vice Canada alive as a showcase of the content and people that shape our culture is a priority for us,” said Ryan Archibald, president of Vice Canada, in a statement sent to MobileSyrup.
Vice says that its partnership with Rogers resulted in over 130 hours of original Canadian programming. Last month Vice Canada announced an exclusive deal with Bell to broadcast Vice News Tonight, along with a partnership to produce two documentaries focused on the opioid crisis.
Source: Rogers (Newswire)