Nancy Dubuc, C.E.O. of Vice, Is Stepping Down

Nancy Dubuc, the chief executive of Vice Media, who attempted to improve the company’s culture and steady its finances after taking over nearly five years ago, is stepping down, she said in an email to employees on Friday.

Ms. Dubuc is leaving the company as it explores a sale of some or all of the business. Ms. Dubuc, whose last day is Friday, did not say in her note who would replace her as chief executive. Reached by phone Friday, she declined to comment further.

“I know you are among the most resilient, creative, and determined talent in the business and your futures are bright and hopeful,” Ms. Dubuc wrote in her email. “Remember what I try to remind you, and that is to appreciate how far you’ve come.”

In her note, Ms. Dubuc said that, although Vice is facing new business headwinds, the company became less reliant on advertising during her tenure and made strides to become more financially independent.

In a statement, Vice’s board said that Ms. Dubuc joined the company during a critical period and “positioned the company for long-term success,” adding that Vice would announce new leadership for the company soon.

Ms. Dubuc joined Vice Media in 2018, replacing Shane Smith, the brash chief executive who struck a series of deals that drove the company’s valuation ever higher but left it with onerous financial obligations to its increasingly anxious investors, who were antsy for an exit. She joined shortly after investigations into the company’s culture, including from The New York Times, revealed incidents of sexual harassment against women who worked for the company.

Ms. Dubuc made improving the company's culture a priority, and recruited more women into its leadership ranks. She said in an interview last month that Vice had made significant strides toward improving its culture and business operations, noting that it was “unclear whether the company could survive” when she joined.

Vice has struggled to show profitability during Ms. Dubuc’s tenure. The company missed its revenue target last year, but Ms. Dubuc said in her memo that the company would become profitable in 2023 under the right ownership.

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