Viacom Takes a Minority Stake in DEFY and Enters Into Marketing and Content Syndication Agreement to Leverage DEFY’s Digital Media Leadership with Young Audiences
New York, June 9, 2014 – DEFY Media, LLC. (DEFY), a leading creator and distributor of digital content, and Viacom Inc. (Nasdaq: VIAB, VIA) today announced that DEFY has acquired Viacom’s gaming focused digital properties Addicting Games, GameTrailers and Shockwave, extending the Company’s portfolio of digital properties and further strengthening its reach to 13-34 year old consumers. In consideration for the digital properties, Viacom will receive a minority interest in DEFY (formed by the Alloy Digital and Break Media “merger of equals”). The two companies have also entered into marketing and content syndication agreements that will draw on their respective scale and expertise in developing and distributing entertainment to influential audiences.
The addition of Viacom’s digital gaming properties significantly expands and deepens DEFY’s gaming and entertainment portfolio, which now includes GameTrailers, SMOSH Games, ranked among YouTube’s fastest growing channels ever, award-winning The Escapist, and Gamefront, along with other digital properties and premium partners focused on the interests of gaming enthusiasts. The transaction adds new revenue streams for DEFY, including subscription based platforms, while also greatly expanding the Company’s targeted offerings for advertisers.
“We formed DEFY with the belief that our infrastructure and brands represent the strongest platform in digital media for reach and scale to the 13-34 year old audience and with Viacom’s partnership we now have additional assets and support to fulfill that vision,” commented Matthew Diamond, CEO of DEFY Media. “These outstanding brands represent meaningful and diverse revenue opportunities we aim to expand across our existing brand portfolio.”
The transaction is the latest move in expanding DEFY’s online reach and further diversifies a brand portfolio that already includes Break, SMOSH, AWEme, Clevver, The Gloss, Made Man and Screen Junkies. In total, the company’s owned and operated reach now exceeds 155 million monthly unique viewers watching more than 400 million monthly videos monthly. The DEFY Media brands attract 40 million YouTube subscribers and 55 million followers on social media (both up 40% since the merger), and they recently crossed the 10 million mark in downloads of video viewing mobile apps.
DEFY Media’s content ownership model and sophisticated distribution capabilities make the company a logical partner for Viacom, which will benefit from DEFY’s targeted digital brands for young audiences. The investment in DEFY Media allows Viacom to benefit from the company’s substantial reach and also tap into unique content and marketing opportunities with the company’s top digital talent and personalities.
Viacom joins existing DEFY Media investors that include ZelnickMedia, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), and ABS Capital. A representative from Viacom will join the DEFY Media board.
Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.
Viacom is home to premier global media brands that create compelling television programs, motion pictures, short-form video, apps, games, consumer products, social media and other entertainment content for audiences in more than 160 countries and territories. Viacom’s media networks, including MTV, VH1, CMT, Logo, BET, CENTRIC, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., TeenNick, Nicktoons, Nick at Nite, Comedy Central, TV Land, SPIKE, Tr3s, Paramount Channel and VIVA, reach approximately 700 million households worldwide. Paramount Pictures, America’s oldest film studio, is a major global producer and distributor of filmed entertainment.
For more information about Viacom and its businesses, visit www.viacom.com. Keep up with Viacom news by following Viacom’s blog at blog.viacom.com and Twitter feed at www.twitter.com/Viacom.
About DEFY Media
DEFY Media is the definitive media company for the digital generation, formed by the 2013 merger of Alloy Digital and Break Media. The merger united two companies with strong legacies and expertise in creating influential and culturally significant entertainment properties for 12-34 year old consumers. DEFY Media creates some of the most popular content in digital under its leading portfolio of brands, including Break, Clevver, Made Man, SMOSH, Screen Junkies, The Gloss, and The Escapist, together reaching over 155 million consumers monthly through owned web, YouTube, mobile, social, and emerging OTT platforms. The world’s top brands partner with DEFY to build immersive advertising solutions that deliver unparalleled access to this influential audience. With uniquely integrated capabilities in content development, studio production, distribution and promotion, DEFY Media is built for content delivery in the digital age. Please visit us at www.DEFYMedia.com.
For DEFY Media:
310.360.4141 Ext. 363