What do you do after you pull down $450 million in new funding from a private equity giant while the rumor mill spins into overdrive that your IPO is about to drop like a hot new Chainsmokers dubstep remix? You get casually seductive about what your painfully hip media startup will do with almost half a billion new dollars.
VICE CEO Shane Smith knows what we're talking about...
Dodging a direct question about any plans Vice has to become a publicly traded company, Smith said, "It's what we would do if we were going to go public — is get a third party paying and start building our book, and bringing in revenue on a sort of hockey stick basis. So that a theoretical IPO would look very sexy."
But Smith wasn't just playing sexy coy about an IPO, he was doing it while sitting on the Cannes waterfront wearing sunglasses, a black t-shirt and shorts, straight chillin' on The Riviera and talking about how to tweak public market valuation in the hippest way possible. Below is the video of Smith on CNBC, he says the word "Sexy" thrice and manages to sound like your middle-aged pot-dealing neighbor while speaking the lingua franca of a modern media mogul.
We've been pretty hard on tech IPOs lately but even we have to give props to a way over-valued, middle-aged media startup that refuses to act its age while taking huge pre-IPO money from the same guy who just had to resign from Uber's board, and is being led by a guy who acts like he just ate six edibles while scanning a few spreadsheets at lunch in Cannes.