Rogers and Vice terminate partnership

Courtesy of Clio Entertainment

Rogers and Vice have terminated their joint venture that saw the latter make exclusive content to be broadcast on the former's properties.

Viceland launched in Canada as a 24-hour linear channel as part of the JV in February 2016 but reports emerged in newspaper The Globe and Mail at the end of November a year ago that Rogers was considering withdrawing its financial support. As a result of the termination, Rogers Media has transferred its interest in VICE Studio Canada to VICE Canada, and VICELAND will cease broadcasting on March 31, 2018.

Rogers says it is evolving its Canadian content strategy and will redirect future funding to initiatives that "better align" with its portfolio and brands, adding it wants to explore opportunities that appeal to a broad audience.

Back in October 2014, Rogers and VICE Media signed a $100 million deal for content, which would see shows air on TV and exclusively for mobile customers of Rogers and Fido.

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"Rogers Media's initial investment helped to establish our studio as a leading producer of some of the most engaging Canadian content out there and we thank them for their partnership", Ryan Archibald, president of Vice Canada, said in a statement.

Vice will retain full ownership of Viceland's 130-hour content library and the content studio (in which Rogers held a minority stake).

In a statement, Vice said that it will be announcing new partnerships in the Canada soon. But Vice insists the news does not mean the end of its Canadian operations. In 2016, its subscriber numbers slipped to 1.5 million, a 7.5-per-cent decline compared with the previous year. Subscriber revenues declined almost 19 per cent to 4.68 million.

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