Tom Freston made MTV a giant, and now he's making a bet on a small media venture which has a lot of similarities. Vice is edgy, it targets young men, and former Viacom CEO Freston says it has huge international growth potential. Today Freston announced an investment in Vice, along with the news that he's coming on board and will act as an advisor on the company's growth, focusing on content and international expansion.
Freston has been a fan of Vice since his Viacom days, which the media giant bought a stake in the company. But since then Vice has transformed from a magazine with a digital offshoot to a true multi-platform, diversified company. In addition to its magazine and video-heavy web site, it has a film and book label, it has a TV show on MTV, as well as a branding firm that's worked with Intel, Nike and Dell. It's hard for marketers to reach Vice's target audience of hipster, edge 20-something men, so the brands go to Vice, for an authentic-feeling presence in their world.
Freston's investing along with other high-profile names also announced today.