Building up its exec team, kids app maker HOMER has hired former Sesame Workshop creative director J Milligan as its first VP of children’s creative. Milligan joined the New York-based company last month in the newly created role, and is responsible for guiding the production of new early learning content targeting kids two to eight.
HOMER provides educational stories, games and songs to kids through subscription service-based apps Homer Stories and Homer Reading, and it’s aiming to grow its creative offerings by bringing on Milligan, according to a statement from the company.
Prior to joining HOMER, Milligan was Sesame’s creative director where he was the lead designer, writer and director on interactive TV, voice recognition and VR projects for kids such as the Sesame Street Family Play app, and the Xbox video game Kinect Sesame Street TV. After an 18-year stint with Sesame Workshop, Milligan became the head of Swedish app developer’s Toca Boca’s TV unit. In that role he built up the company’s television studio and team for its subscription platform Toca TV, which created more than 200 pieces of original content before the division shuttered it in 2017.
Since then, he’s held roles as the creative executive producer at New York-based app maker Two Moos, where he worked to develop new games, such as Smileyscope VR. He was also one of the founding partners of creative development agency Lanky Co, which focuses on building IP and content for kids, including in-development animated series Willow Tree Society.
HOMER has been rapidly growing its team with familiar faces from the industry such as Youngna Park, the former COO of kids app designer Tinybop, as VP of child experience to help develop the its apps last month. In the last six months the company has hired 27 new employees, including Mattel’s first child development and learning head Jody LeVos, as VP of child and family development.