Rumor Mill: Defy Media Latest MCN on the Block – Asking Price Approaches $500M

/ Feb 3, 2016

Defy Media

One of the earliest-formed MCN’s Defy Media is rumored to be on the block. And true to MCN form, Defy is chasing a pretty big sale price that is said to stretch towards $500 million, according to various sources. Executives close to senior management at Defy have told VideoInk that most of the major traditional media companies have come to the table, but Viacom is the likely buyer — not surprising given Viacom joined ABS Capital Partners, ZelnickMedia, and Lionsgate as a minority stakeholder in 2014. A Defy spokesperson declined to comment or confirm.

Defy Media, which is the post-merger moniker of Alloy Digital and Break Media, has built a multi-platform media business that includes owned and operated sites for teens, young adults – both female and male, video properties and apps. Some of these brands include gURL, The Escapist, Clevver TV, and Shut Up! Cartoons. Cumulatively, Defy’s brands reach over 750 million monthly unique views from over 80 millon monthly visitors.

SMOSH#s_TubularLabs_VideoInk

*Data from Tubular Labs

Perhaps the most well known brand in Defy’s portfolio is SMOSH, a YouTube brand it acquired from DECA (now known as Kin Community) and one that currently reaches over 21 million subscribers on YouTube where it draws over 140 million views monthly, on average.

According to SocialBlade, those kinds of numbers could generate up to $4.3 million annually, from ad revenue on YouTube alone and not factoring custom branded or commissioned content, merch, or other revenue streams for the brand. Under Defy’s leadership, SMOSH expanded the brand to include SMOSH Games, which in its own right has over 6 million subscribers.

Defy’s timing in the market might be tricky as it chases down a $500 million sale. The hype on multichannel networks has significantly cooled as even those associated with “MCN’s”  dissociate with the term in favor of a new acronym “MPN” (multi-platform network). And Defy may be too far behind the heat wave that surged in 2014 and 2015 around multichannel networks and the gargantuan valuations sparked by Maker Studios sale to Disney in 2014 for $500 million, followed by Fullscreen’s attempt at a sale for around the same pricetag.

But, sources familiar with Defy’s annual revenue, recent business growth and projected revenues, claim that while a $500 million valuation could strike a bit high for the company, it’s not far off based on a valuation of 2-3x Defy’s annual revenue. And since Viacom’s investment in 2014, Defy’s O&O reach has grown by 53% and the company has seen roughly 42% increase in downloads of its video-related mobile apps.

With Defy potentially off the map, and Omnia’s recent sale to Blue Ant, the only major “MCN’s” left in the neighborhood are DanceOn, Machinima, MiTu, WhistleSports, The Young Turks and Kin Community.

Tags: , , , , , , ,


Jessica Alba Some Kind of Beautiful

Jessica Alba Lands on Apple’s ‘Planet of the Apps’

 
MrWoofless Robert Latsky

Minecraft Gaming Star MrWoofless Joins Blackshore Multi-Channel...

 
The Young Turks TYT's Ana Kasparian and John Iadarola

The Young Turks’ Limited-Run Fusion Cable Show Announces...

 
YouTube Space LA Oval Office Set

YouTube Spaces Get Presidential with Creators on Election-Themed Sets

 
Industry Tickets Selling Fast!
Click above to lock in your registration for VidCon 2015!
 
Twitter Amplify

How Twitter is Opening Up Video Monetization for Creators with...

 
Legends of Gaming Season 2 Endemol Shine Beyond

Mashable Grabs Exclusive Distribution for 5 Series from Beyond

 
yupptv

YuppTV Partners with Indian Humor Video Aggregator Comedy Munch

 
Yvonne-Strahovski-Chuck-promo-season-2-14

Hulu Adds Yvonne Strahovski (‘Dexter’) to...

 
Alison Brie Community

Allison Brie (‘Community’) to Wrestle for Netflix in...

 
Michael Phelps Facebook Live Rio Olympics

Michael Phelps Tops Facebook Live as It Pulls in 139 Million...

 
Stand Up to Cancer with YouTube Endemol Shine Group

Brits Stand Up To Cancer with Live-Streamed YouTube Campaign

 
How They Made Fight of the Living Dead Experiment 88

How They Made YouTube Red’s ‘Fight of the Living...

 
More people in the US use Smart TVs than last year

Cord-Stackers Get Most Satisfaction from SVOD Experience

 
BizWireTV Launches on Apple TV, iPhone and Android Devices

BizWireTV Streaming News Show Comes to Mobile

 
Now We're Talking LeBron James Uninterrupted Go90

First Look at Trailer for Go90 series ‘Now We’re...

 
American Gods Amazon Starz

Amazon Captures ‘American Gods’ for Prime Video in ...

 
Digital Domain World Surf League Tahiti

Digital Domain Goes 360 with World Surf League in Tahiti

 
Streamy Awards

Epic Rap Battles and ‘Oscar’s Hotel’ Top...

 
Dose

Dose Hires BuzzFeed and Elite Daily Execs to Build Out Video and...

 
Wong Fu Productions Single by 30 YouTube Red New Form Digital

How Wong Fu Productions Upped Their Game with YouTube...

 
DigitalCabana_Ep4Still

Streaming Businesses Are A Dime A Dozen, Will They Work?

 
DigitalCabana_Ep4Still

Why is Facebook Catching Push-Back from Premium Publishers?

 
SekineRisa_VideoInk_300x250

International MCN’s Are Still Standing —...

 
JW Player

JW Player’s New “JW Showcase” Further Enables...

 
YuYu_VideoInk_300x250

Digital Media Rights Announces Another Streaming Service — YuYu

 
netflix mobile

Majority of Netflix Subscribers to be Outside of U.S. by 2018

 
ComcastWatchable_Exclusives_VideoInk_300x250

Comcast’s Watchable Grabs Exclusive Titles from Cut, Buzzfeed

 
Rupert Grint Wild Target

Rupert Grint to Star in Crackle’s Series Adaptation of...

 
Vaughan Emsley Tongal

Why Vaughan Emsley Left an Old School Ad Giant for...

 
NextVR and FOX Sports to Broadcast Bundesliga Opening Match Live

NextVR Live Streaming Bundesliga German Soccer League Kick-off...

 
Netflix acquires three new indie flicks

Netflix Returning to Canada with ‘Anne of the Green...

 
AOL Alpha VR Virtual Reality

Does the Future of Virtual Reality Sit at Home and Wear a Headset?

 
Udi Jacobi_VideoInk_300x250

Ad Blocking: How Big is the Problem and What Can Publishers Do...

 
Damon Dash Dame Dash Studios Dame Dash TV

Hip Hop Entrepreneur Damon Dash Launches Dame Dash TV OTT Channel

 
Jake Paul

Vine Star Jake Paul to Headline DigiTour’s ‘Team 10...

 
Dr. Havoc's Diary Fullscreen

EXCLUSIVE CLIP: Fullscreen’s “Dr. Havoc’s...

 
Between_Jennette_McCurdy Netflix

Jennette McCurdy Pacts with Canvas Media Studios for Series...

 
John Zhang Indigenous Media

Indigenous Media Hires DanceOn’s John Zhang as EVP of Marketing

 
Jamie Curry WME

WME Signs Kiwi YouTube star Jamie Curry of Jamie’s World

 
Elizabeth Grier Nash and Hayes Awestruck

Nash & Hayes Grier’s Mom Joins Awestruck Network