TVA Group, the Montreal-based subsidiary of Quebecor Media that produces television, audiovisual products and magazine publications largely for the Canadian province of Quebec, today announced a new multimedia French-language brand targeting both kids ages two to six and their parents.
The new YOOPA brand includes a kids specialty digital TV channel, a parenting magazine of the same name and a website with content for both kids and parents. The channel and magazine are set to launch on April 1. The website will go live on May 28, merging and rebranding existing online publications PetitMonde.ca and EspaceParents.ca.
Denis Dubois, TVA’s specialty channel director, and Patricia Lavoie, director of original productions for the new channel, told KidScreen that YOOPA will fill what they see as a gap in specialty French-language preschool programming in the Canadian province of Quebec. They also said that the channel will launch with programming from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. with as many first-time French broadcasts in Canada as possible. Acquired series include Angelina Ballerina (HIT Entertainment), Waybuloo (RDF/Decode Enterprises), Blue’s Clues (Nickelodeon), LazyTown (LazyTown) and Pororo (Iconix/Moonscoop).
Dubois and Lavoie say the channel will expand to a 24-hour schedule in the future and will work with independent producers on original productions. In the meantime, the first in-house original live-action, puppet-based production will begin airing on June 1, and a second production is slated to debut in the fall, which together will total 65 half hours or original programming in the first year.