November 14, 2014
In order to create and distribute new original music programming, Live Nation Entertainment has launched a joint venture with Vice. Live Nation is a concert promoter, while Vice is a media producer that primarily targets younger audiences. Planning to launch in early 2015, the digital network will target millennials on the Internet, on mobile devices, through television, and in theaters. Hundreds of hours of music shows and editorial content will be featured with an emphasis on live music.
Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino “considers the original shows ‘the secret sauce’ of the platform, of which several series already have been developed, including ‘Hometown Heroes,’ that will bring musicians back to their roots, the environmentally themed ‘Earth Works,’ and a concept that aims to reinvent the music video in a live format, working with such directors as Spike Jones,” reports Variety.
Both companies will supply resources. Meanwhile, Vice founder and CEO Shane Smith will oversee the creative elements of the network.
“Our DNA is to put artists on stages and let them do what they do,” said Rapino. “We have a large network and sponsors but not a lot of great content to deliver to that ad community.” Live Nation produces about 23,000 live shows each year.
In 1994, Vice began as a magazine focused on alternative culture. Since then, it has “… grown into a network of digital channels, TV production studio, record label, book publisher and filmmaker,” notes Variety.
Vice sees the merger as a way to pool resources and target its core demographic with more genres of music.
“We want to create tentpoles, great feature film releases that can be released theatrically and online,” said Smith. “This partnership rethinks the live music experience, offering unprecedented access to the world’s biggest stars and emerging artists, and groundbreaking content that will be distributed across the holy trinity of mobile, online and TV.”