Refinery29 was founded as a niche fashion blog in 2005, with Justin Stefano and Philippe von Borries serving as co-CEOs. After the site was acquired by Vice, Stefano and von Borries stepped away from day-to-day operations. As a female-led fashion blog, Refinery29 was a rare haven where young women were treated seriously. The site’s staff included women who wrote and attended industry high-profile events in their own voices.
Co-founder Christene Barberich
Refinery29 is a female-focused digital publisher with over 425 million readers. Its founder and co-founder, Christene Barberich, is leaving her role as editor-in-chief. Since founding the site, she has learned important lessons about leadership and delegating work. This article explores Barberich’s career trajectory, including her experiences with a scrappy magazine.
A message sent to Refinery29 employees from VICE CEO Nancy Duboc explains that Barberich is still working for the company. Although she is stepping down, she will remain a part of the R29 community and continue to work with the company. It is not the first time that Barberich has been accused of racial discrimination, but it was certainly the most publicized issue in recent months.
Refinery29 recently announced that Jamie Oliver, a former skateboarder, will become the company’s new CEO. The company was acquired by Vice for $400 million and faced a number of scandals, including sexual harassment, racial discrimination, and more. Despite these issues, the company continued to grow and even supported the Black Lives Matter movement, which prompted many former employees to share their stories online with the hashtag #BlackatR29. Vice CEO Nancy Dubuc said she was “deeply disturbed” by the Refinery29 culture. Despite the sexy title, Refinery29 was acquired by Vice Media Group last year for $400 million.
The resignation of Emmerich follows an investigation into the company’s handling of sexual harassment allegations. Vice Media, which acquired the company last year, hired an outside law firm to investigate the situation. The findings of the investigation will be used to take appropriate action, a Vice Media spokesperson said. Amy Emmerich has not yet responded to requests for comment. In the meantime, Refinery29 is continuing to hire new management, which will be crucial to the company’s future.
Refinery29 is a leading lifestyle media company with a growing global audience of 175 million users. Their content ranges from fashion and beauty to politics and lifestyle. The site also features the latest celebrity news, and aims to entertain and delight its readers. The company’s editorial team is made up of individuals from various backgrounds, including lawyers, entrepreneurs, and people with diverse interests. This diversity of perspectives is key to the success of Refinery29.
The brand’s success is largely due to its ability to create a thriving audience. Refinery29 has successfully mastered brand engagement and is now partially ad-supported, with 63% of its audience buying a product after seeing an advertisement on the website. In fact, Refinery29 has been so successful that Amy Emmerich, a former Vice Media executive and EVP of Programming, has been named as Chief Content Officer.
Diversity at Refinery29 was a major issue last week, and the global editor-in-chief and co-founder Christine Barberich stepped down from her position to make way for more diverse leadership. Earlier in the week, former black employees at the fashion-focused website spoke out against their company’s lack of diversity, and the R29 Union stepped in to support their cause. In response, Ashley Alese Edwards wrote a letter to Refinery29 highlighting the lack of diversity among its staff. She also praised the company for supporting protests against police brutality and systemic racism.
Refinery29 has been an advocate for diversity in the fashion industry since its inception in 2005. Originally a fashion and beauty blog, it has expanded into an activist outlet for female empowerment and equal opportunity. In 2016, it launched sub-brands for women and Latinx women, and pledged to use more plus-size models in their stock photos. It has also teamed up with Getty Images on numerous projects, including the launch of its 67% Project, a campaign to increase female representation.
The leadership at women’s lifestyle publication Refinery29 has been shaken up. Top editor Christene Barberich has stepped down from her role, amidst allegations of discrimination. The former Refinery29 employee will remain as an adviser until the fall, but she did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The news has prompted some critics to question the company’s commitment to diversity.
To ensure the diversity of its content, Refinery29 recently launched its Mad Chatter community, comprised of 11,000+ opted-in and highly profiled women. This platform allows the company to monetize insight, support repeated revenue generation, and guide creative content generation. For this reason, it has partnered with companies that share their values. In the meantime, advertisers will continue to benefit from the company’s brand equity.
A recent thread on Reddit detailed the misogyny at Refinery29. Despite the company’s mission of helping women claim their power, the company’s culture reportedly has a distinctly male slant. For example, one video team lead by a white man allegedly verbally abused female staffers in public. Despite the company’s mission to encourage women to “claim their power,” some employees claimed they felt cooped up in their desks for long hours.