California-based Genius Brands International has appointed renowned kids TV exec Margaret Loesch (pictured) to the newly created role of executive chairman of its Kid Genius VOD toon channel, while also upping the channel’s GM, Debra Pierson, to president.
Loesch, who joined GBI’s board of directors in March 2015 after a five-year stint as founding CEO of the Hub Network, will work alongside Pierson to help grow the channel’s brand strategy, reach and advertising footprint both domestically and abroad.
During her more than four decades in the kids entertainment business, Loesch has held senior roles at The Jim Henson Company, Fox Kids Network, Marvel Productions and Hanna-Barbera Productions. She has been instrumental in the growth of TV programs like Smurfs, My Little Pony, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, X-Men, Jim Henson’s Muppet Babies, Animaniacs and Transformers.
Pierson, meanwhile, joined GBI as GM of Kid Genius in March 2016, after five-plus years spent at multiplatform VOD channel Kabillion as VP of sales and marketing.
At Kid Genius, she’s been responsible for the channel’s expansion into nearly 50 million US homes, 20 million of which were recently added in a digital distribution deal with Future Today.
Her 25-year industry experience also includes a VP of specialty merchandise role at Neopets, where she created the brand’s independent L&M program for its 25 million registered users.
Offering cartoons such as Baby Genius, Eddie Is A Yeti, SpacePOP, Warren Buffett’s Secret Millionaires Club and Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab, Kid Genius is currently available on Comcast’s Xfinity on Demand platform, as well as on OTT platforms including Roku, Apple, Amazon, Sony, Google and Samsung.