CONSUMER PRODUCTS / RETAIL
The first quarter of 2014 brought net losses of US$11.2 million for Mattel, as the worlds largest toymaker saw Barbie sales drop 14%. Meanwhile, Barbie’s American Girl and Ever After High sisters continues to rise in popularity.
iKIDS / MOBILE / SOCIAL / WEB
After setting sights on the US market with the acquisition of L.A.-based MobiGirl Media, UK-based kid and teen mobile marketing platform SuperAwesome is looking at a home-court advantage, as the company has now acquired the advertising business of UK virtual world Bin Weevils.
PEOPLE MOVES / TV
Nigel Pickard is stepping down from his role as CEO of Zodiak UK Kids and chair of production company The Foundation at the end of this month, Zodiak Media has confirmed.
COMPANIES / iKIDS / TV / WEB
Make way for Relativity Media. The television and film studio is trying to scoop up YouTube multi-channel network Maker Studios from Disney with a last-minute bid worth up to US$1.1 billion.
Featured iKids / iKIDS / SOCIAL / TV / WEB
Dane Boedigheimer’s Annoying Orange online comedy series has spawned a Cartoon Network show and a number of licensed consumer products. And now, the Orange’s signature yellow-toothed smile has been viewed two billion times on YouTube, a feat that holds more significance than ever as multi-channel networks and online TV creations continue to be courted by huge traditional media companies.
- Why Activision’s CEO took a US$55 million pay cut last year (Bloomberg)
- Study finds the obesity rate among US kids remains flat, while rates of severe obesity are rising (USA Today)
- Comcast gears up to face US regulators (The New York Times)
- Is Ellen’s Oscar selfie really worth US$1 billion? (The Hollywood Reporter)
Vancouver, Canada-based Atomic Cartoons has named Luke Carroll as its new creative director as the company looks to boost investment in generating creative content and develop more original properties.
Following a deal between Viacom and The Sunway Group, the first Nickelodeon-themed attraction- dubbed Nickelodeon Explorer’s Oasis – is set to debut within Malaysia’s Sunway Lagoon theme park in March 2015.
In January, The Hub issued a soft launch of a new tablet-responsive website, rebranded to HubNetwork.com, after which time the number of site visitors hailing from mobile devices experienced a significant spike. With the numbers – and audience – in plain view, the net is now launching its first app, which features games, full episodes and video shorts, as well as a cartoon-integrated photo booth.
It looks like the impact of Turner’s Animation, Young Adults & Kids Media president and COO Stuart Snyder’s departure at the end of last month is reverberating through the company, as 14-year Turner vet Paul Condolora and Cartoon Network programming and scheduling SVP Stacy Isenhower have departed from their positions.
A new kid-centric subscription on-demand (SVOD) service has entered the fray, with L.A.-based Genius Brands International announcing that the entire Baby Genius music and video library will be up for streaming online at http://babygenius.com
Guru Studio’s preschool series Justin Time is at the center of a new broadcast partnership with Cartoonito in Italy, and the show will also see extended shelf life on Netflix in Latin America.