Vice Media, the giant, multi-armed media company that's all about the youths, announced Friday that it has acquired a majority stake in Starworks Group, a fashion and beauty brand development agency founded in 2000 by James Grant and Alana Varel. Recently, Starworks has worked on communications projects for Ivy Park, Farfetch, Roksanda and Kenzo; forged partnerships for Calvin Klein’s #MyCalvins, GUESS Originals x A$AP Rocky and beauty brands including Chanel and L'Oreal; and connected talent with H&M, Tiffany & Co and Tods Group. It also represents industry creatives including Selena Gomez's stylist Christian Classen and Rachel Zoe.
Under the new acquisition, Starworks will "integrate Vice’s leadership position in youth media with its unique strategic and creative capacity, presenting an unrivaled solution for brands to enhance audience engagement and accelerate business performance," according to a statement that also highlighted the use of data and consumer insights to guide projects. Starworks will continue to work with clients independent of its Vice affiliation and will expand to new cities.
"This partnership evolves the antiquated fashion agencies model" said Grant, Starworks CEO, in a statement. "Consumers know what they like, but brands are confused about how to give it to them. Our collaboration, created in response to market needs, brings everyone together; connecting old dots with new through a simple, transparent solution that gives everyone what they want."
Vice Media's first serious foray into the fashion world came with its purchase of British magazine i-D in December 2012, which it has since heavily expanded online. Just this month, the multi-armed media company also bought Dasha Zhukova's Garage magazine, with plans to launch an online vertical and expand the print coverage.
This isn't Vice's first agency acquisition: It bought digital agency Carrot in 2013, which counts Cartoon Network, Lord & Taylor and H&M as clients. Starworks will work together with Carrot, Vice's communications agency Virtue Worldwide and U.K. production company Pulse Films, which Vice acquired in March.