Monday, November 11, 2019

First Look at 'PAW Patrol: The Movie' Logo

The award‐winning Paris and Montreal-based animation studio has announced the PAWsome news that Mikros Animation Montreal is collaborating with Spin Master Entertainment to bring PAW Patrol’s beloved rescue pups to the big screen for the first time! And to celebrate, the studio, a Technicolor company, has unveiled a super first look at PAW Patrol The Movie's logo!


Currently in its sixth season, PAW Patrol follows a pack of heroic rescue pups—Chase, Marshall, Rubble, Skye, Rocky, Zuma, Everest and Tracker—who are led by a tech-savvy boy named Ryder. Together, they work hard to show the people of Adventure Bay that “no job is too big, no pup is too small!” The series features a curriculum that focuses on citizenship, social skills and problem-solving. Nickelodeon recently renewed PAW Patrol for a seventh season of 26 half-hour episodes.

PAW Patrol: The Movie was originally announced announced in November 2017, and is currently slated for a late-2021 release. The movies' synopsis has yet to be announced.

Mikros Image (Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, Asterix: The Secret of the Magic Potion) is also currently hard at work producing Nickelodeon Movies and Paramount Animation's third SpongeBob SquarePants theatrical, The SpongeBob Movie: It's a Wonderful Sponge, currently scheduled to debut in theatres on Friday, May 22, 2020.

Mikros Animation Montreal is currently hiring staff to work on PAW Patrol - The Movie. To look at the current job vacancies and to apply, visit: https://www.mikrosimage-animation.eu/en/apply/

Update (11/11) - Spin Master recently revealed in their Third Quarter 2019 Earnings Conference Call that they are now targeting a late-2021 release date for PAW Patrol The Movie: "Progress continues for the first-ever theatrical animated PAW Patrol film, which we are targeting for release in late 2021, and we believe PAW Patrol will set the foundation for other properties to follow onto the big screen."

The company also gave a few updates about PAW Patrol:

- "In Q2, we launched a new season of PAW Patrol franchise and products, based on the season six Mighty PAW theme. Since the launch, PAW Patrol has grown through the third quarter. PAW Patrol has higher consumer engagement than ever before. This is a testament to our strategy of refreshing themes to keep the characters and stories relevant."

- "In Pre-School and Girls, our core brand showed strong double-digit year-over-year sales growth, led by Twisty Petz and PAW Patrol, up 6 percent in Q3, and sales of Candylocks and Pre Cool, offset by sales of Party Popteenies in Q3 2018, which was unsuccessful and did not carry forward into 2019."

- "PAW continues to be the leading preschool licence globally. We saw positive POS growth in Europe and especially strong POS growth in Germany, Russia, Poland, and Slovakia in particular. In Asia, the launch in Japan continues to gain momentum in Q3. In the US, POS for PAW Patrol declined mid-single digit. We saw an impact on POS due to launch of Toy Story 4, which both targeted the same consumer. Overall, however, we expect PAW POS to grow in Q4 with the launch of the new, higher price-point items, including the Mighty Lookout Tower, as well as the Fire Truck and Jet."

- The Pre-school and Girls category saw strong performance, driven by fresh themes in PAW Patrol and innovative new product lines. In Q2, we began shipping the new Mighty Pups line, and volume grew globally in Q3. This fall, we introduced the Ready Race Rescue TV special and new toy items that brings the theme to life. Overall, we’ve seen significant growth in views of our content. The Mighty Pups trailer was our top-performing PAW Patrol content ever with 34 million views. We are excited about the launch of our lower price-point die-cast line, which was successfully launched at the beginning of Q3. We remain confident in PAW Patrol’s prospects for 2019 and beyond based on upcoming content, new themes, and innovative products."

More Nick: Nickelodeon Launches PAW Patrol Safety First! Global Campaign!

Originally published: Saturday, November 09, 2019.

Special thanks to @TVShowsFan for the news!
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'The SpongeBob Musical: Live On Stage' Cast Sing Iconic 'SpongeBob' Quotes

It's far from a typical Bikini Bottom day because cast members from Nickelodeon's The SpongeBob Musical: Live On Stage are singing some of the most iconic lines from the beloved animated series! Have the best day ever by checking out the video below and seeing Broadway cast members Ethan Slater (SpongeBob SquarePants), Danny Skinner (Super Sea Star Savior Patrick Star), Christina Sajous (Sandy Cheeks), and more put their own spin on some of the show's most memorable moments.


Following a critically lauded run on Broadway, members of the original award-winning Broadway company of The SpongeBob Musical: Live On Stage! are reuniting to film the show for television in front of a live theater audience. The live television production captures all-new depths of theatrical innovation where the power of optimism really can save the world. Filmed at Theatre Royal Plymouth in Plymouth, UK, The SpongeBob Musical: Live On Stage! will air on Nickelodeon this December.


The SpongeBob Musical: Live On Stage! cast will include Ethan Slater as SpongeBob SquarePants, Gavin Lee as Squidward Q. Tentacles, Danny Skinner as Patrick Star, Brian Ray Norris as Eugene Krabs, Wesley Taylor as Sheldon Plankton, and Christina Sajous as Sandy Cheeks. The ensemble will include Kyle Matthew Hamilton, Katie LeeHill, Curtis Holbrook, L'ogan J'ones, Jai'len Josey, Kelvin Moon Loh, Lauralyn Mcclelland, Vasthy Mompoint, Bryonha Parham, Oneika Phillips, Jon Rua, JC Schuster, Abby C. Smith, Robert Taylor Jr., Allan Washington.

This one-of-a-kind television musical event features original songs by Yolanda Adams, Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith, Sara Bareilles, Jonathan Coulton, Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, The Flaming Lips, Lady Antebellum, Cyndi Lauper, John Legend, Panic! At The Disco, Plain White T's, They Might Be Giants and T.I. (Clifford Harris, Jr.) Domani Harris and Darwin Quinn and a song by David Bowie and by Tom Kenny and Andy Paley. Additional lyrics by Jonathan Coulton. Additional music by Tom Kitt.


The SpongeBob Musical: Live On Stage! is a musical production conceived and directed for the stage by Tina Landau, book by Kyle Jarrow, orchestrations, arrangements & music supervision by Tom Kitt, with choreography by Christopher Gattelli, produced for television by Austin Shaw with television direction by Glenn Weiss. Nickelodeon’s Vice Presidents Paul J Medford and Susan Vargo serve as Executive Producers, alongside Senior Vice President of Music & Talent Doug Cohn and is executive produced and overseen by Executive Vice President of Unscripted and Live Events Rob Bagshaw.

SpongeBob SquarePants - The New Musical Original Cast Recording is available to purchase today at https://spongebobmusical.lnk.to/SpongebobMusicalRecording.

The multi-award winning SpongeBob SquarePants Musical is currently touring theatres across the U.S.

More Nick: 'The SpongeBob Musical' National Tour Announces Cast & Dates!

Original source: Broadway World.
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Josh's Firsts on Blue's Clues & You! | Nick Jr.

Josh's Firsts on Blue's Clues & You! | Nick Jr.


There's a first time for everything! Here's to many more, Josh 💙

Don't miss Blue's Clues & You, weekdays on Nickelodeon!

What did you think of the first episode of Blue's Clues & You!? Vote in the poll here!: http://nickalive.blogspot.com/2019/11/what-did-you-think-of-series-premiere.html

Kids can watch their favorite Nick Jr. shows weekdays on Nickelodeon and all week long on the Nick Jr. channel: http://nickjr.com/tvschedule/

Preschoolers can watch full episodes online, play games, and discover silly surprises in the free Nick Jr. App and at NickJr.com. Stream Nick Jr. for free in the Nick Jr. App on Roku and Apple TV or download full episodes for offline viewing on iTunes or Google Play.

You can also download premium apps featuring your child's favorite Nick Jr. shows on iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon, including Nick Jr. Draw and Play and Nick Jr. Let’s Learn!

Watch more Nick Jr. everyday for FREE on Nick Jr. Pluto TV!


More Nick: Nick Jr. Live! "Move To The Music" U.S. Theatrical Tour Dates!
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Nick Jr. UK to Set Sail with 'Pirata & Capitano'

Nick Jr. UK & Ireland has acquired the rights to Millimages’ seafaring preschool animation Pirata & Capitano (52 x 11’), and will premiere the brand-new French CG-animated preschool series during late 2019!


Update (11/11) - Pirata & Capitano premiered on Nick Jr. UK & Ireland on Saturday 9th November 2019!

Co-produced by public national broadcasters France Televisions and Rai (Italy), the brand-new CG-animated preschool series follows Pirata as she travels the Great Sea at the helm of her ship, the Pink Skull, with her loyal crew in search of adventure. Her best friend, Capitano, flies a red seaplane and joins them on their nautical explorations. Young viewers set sail with these heroes on a never ending treasure quest full of adventure and humour, while learning the value of teamwork and friendship. The series is fully produced with the lifelike lighting technique of “Global Illumination” (using technology developed by Dwarf Studios)

Pirata & Capitano has been warmly received in major territories. Already airing on France 5 (France), Tiji (pay TV, France), Rai Yoyo (Italy), SVT (Sweden), YLE (Finland), RUV (Iceland), CJ Tooniverse (South Korea), TV3 (Spain), Gloob (Brazil), Bein (Middle East), Canal+ (Poland), Gulli (Russia), D-Smart (Turkey), MTVA (Hungary), ETV (Estonia), ERT (Greece), LTV (Lativa), Al Jazeera (Middle East) and Balapan (Kazakhstan). The series has also been picked up by Discovery Family (U.S.).

Pirata & Capitano launched in the U.K. on Channel 5's Milkshake! preschool programming strand during summer 2018, where it quickly became the number two most watched show on the block.

Launched at MIPTV, Pirata & Capitano is now in production on Season 2 (52 x 11’), with delivery is set for Q1 2020.

From Licensing.biz:

BLE 2019 Must Sees: Hot picks from the kids’ IP

[...]

Licensing Link Europe

Molang, Pirata & Capitano, and IFL Science will be joining the likes of Chic & Love, and Van Gogh Museum on the Licensing Link stand this year.

Molang, from Millimages, a European leader in the children’s entertainment industry, is a cuddly, kind-hearted, kawaiiinspired rabbit whose animated series is a TV and online hit. Three seasons have already been delivered and a fourth is on the way.

Molang recently celebrated the renewal by Tomy of its European master toy line, not to mention reaching 25 European licensees in all core categories, including toy, stationery and apparel. The toy renewal follows the very successful launch of Molang on Tiny Pop, the free-to-air UK television channel where it sits inside the top 10 shows. Season three is due on Tiny Pop in September, when fans will also see the launch of the show on Amazon Prime in the UK, Germany, France and Italy.

Also from Millimages, Pirata & Capitano is a pre-school animation show following the crew of the ship The Pink Skull as they continue their quest for treasure across the islands of the Great Sea. Season two is currently in production for delivery mid 2020, bringing the total number of episodes to 104. This will be complimented by additional short-form episodes that form the backbone of the digital strategy. The programme, co-produced by France 5 Television and Rai of Italy, has enjoyed strong uptake globally, with new broadcast partners including Discovery in the US, CJ Tooniverse in Korea, Azteca in LatAm and most recently CCTV for China, all coming on board mid-2019. In the UK, the programme quickly became the number two most-watched show on the channel. Nickelodeon Junior.

###

From Licensing Source:

Pirata & Capitano gets Nick Jr. boost

Preschool show now airing on Nick Jr. and Milkshake giving licensing programme a lift.

Preschool show Pirata & Capitano has been given a boost, with Nick Jr. launching season one, adding to its broadcast platforms in the UK.

The show – from French studio, Millimages – launched on Nick Jr. on November 9, while season one also continues on Milkshake, with new episodes airing for the remainder of the year.

Season two will launch in Q2 2020 on Milkshake, while episodes will air on Nick Jr. later in the year.

“We are delighted that Nick Jr. have confirmed that Pirata & Capitano will be airing on their channel starting the back end of 2019, while Milkshake programming continues,” said Ian Wickham, director of Licensing Link Europe, which handles the licensing programme for the show in the UK.

“We couldn’t have asked for better broadcast platforms here in the UK from which to drive brand awareness and engagement with the right consumer. This should bode very well indeed for the growing licensing programme.”

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More Nick: 'Ricky Zoom' to Race into the UK on Nick Jr. and Milkshake!

Originally published: Thursday, September 26, 2019.

Original source: Progressive Preschool September/October 2019; Additional sources: Animation Magazine (II).
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Spotify Announces Spotify Kids App; To Feature Nickelodeon Content

From the Spotify Newsroom:

Introducing Spotify Kids, A New Standalone App for the Next Generation of Listeners

OCTOBER 30, 2019


Spotify is committed to bringing audio content such as music and stories to more people in more ways–including the next generation of listeners. That’s why we decided to launch a fun standalone app designed with safety in mind specifically for kids and families.

We sat down with Alex Norström, Spotify’s Chief Premium Business Officer, to learn a little more about the app.

1. Why create a Spotify Kids app now? What can users look forward to?
We know that families love listening together—whether it’s while driving in the car or cooking dinner together in the kitchen. But we also know that family members love to listen on their own too. That’s why we’re so excited to welcome the next generation of listeners—kids—into the Family Plan experience.

Kids consuming audio content, such as music and stories, isn’t a new phenomenon—in fact, they love it. But most audio experiences were built with adults in mind—meaning they’re not simple, easy, or fun for young kids to use.

Spotify Kids was born out of the desire to create a playground of sound just for kids—to build a place where younger kids can explore their favorite music and stories in a fun environment. The content is ad-free and hand-picked by a team of editors, and the experience is bursting with color. Our visuals help guide young minds through the app with simple navigation and scaled-back text. Before setting out to explore, each kid can also select a custom avatar and color theme to personalize their experience.

Spotify Kids is a composite of playlists, which makes it easy for kids to find music and stories from their favorite movies and TV shows or hit plays on a playlist to sing along to during their favorite activity—or their least favorite chore.

We’re thrilled to beta launch in Ireland and look forward to introducing Spotify Kids in all markets that have Premium Family in the coming months. As we evolve the app experience, we’ll roll out enhanced parental settings and controls for even more customization in an effort to give parents peace of mind.

2. How is the Spotify Kids app different from the original app? Any unique content?
Spotify Kids is a standalone app available exclusively for Premium Family subscribers and intended for kids ages 3+. The content within Kids is hand-picked by a team of editors, who have nearly 100 years of combined experience curating content for kids. They come from some of the most well-respected brands in this space, including Nickelodeon, Disney, Discovery Kids, and Universal Pictures, as well as Public Service in Sweden and BookBeat, which is a family- and kids-oriented audio streaming service.

Beyond the content, the entire Spotify Kids user experience looks and feels different from the Spotify app. And that’s intentional. It’s built for kids, with their specific cognitive skills in mind, and exudes a fun, familiar, playful, and bright atmosphere. This look and feel also varies by age group—for example, the artwork for younger kids is softer and character-based, while content for older kids is more realistic and detailed.

3. Why launch in beta? What are you hoping to learn?
Having a standalone app specifically for younger kids is a new space for Spotify, and we understand the sensitivities around content for children. We are being very deliberate in our launch approach. We’ve started with a beta launch in Ireland, knowing that this initial roll-out phase will yield many learnings from parents, caregivers and other experts as they begin to interact with the app.

As we evolve the Spotify Kids experience over time, we plan to enhance parental control features to allow for even more customization. We’ll also bring our audio expertise to the table with listening experiences that go beyond music—like more stories and audiobooks and eventually podcasts.

4. As you were building the app, did you tap any external resources? Say, consult with any parent organizations or conduct focus groups?
While launching this kids app is an exciting moment for Spotify, creating it was not a task we took lightly. We knew the importance of understanding parents’ needs and making sure they would have peace of mind about the content their kids are consuming.

Spotify has spent more than two years learning about this space, and we’ll continue to learn as people begin to interact with the app. We have gathered expert insight from a number of organizations, including the National Children’s Museum in Washington, D.C., and conducted our own studies with parents around the world and tapped into our Employee Resource Groups here at Spotify.

Spotify Kids is available starting today in Ireland. Ready to get started? Spotify Premium Family master account holders can simply download Kids from the App Store or Google Play, then sign in to their regular Spotify account. (If you’re new to Spotify, you’ll need to sign up for Premium Family before signing in to Spotify Kids.)

For those outside of Ireland, Kids will be rolling out to all markets that currently have Premium Family. Be sure to check back here for more or check out spotify.com/ie/kids.

###

From Variety:

Spotify Kids: Music Streamer Wants to Lure Family-Plan Subscribers With Purpose-Built App

Spotify is trying to sell more multi-account family-plan subscriptions — by setting up a special “playground of sound” just for kids.

The new Spotify Kids app brings together a hand-picked selection of age-appropriate music, singalongs, soundtracks, and stories for kids as young as 3 years old. The app is available in a beta test period initially only in Ireland starting Oct. 30, and will come to other countries where Spotify Premium Family is available in the next few months.

It’s designed to push more consumers to Spotify’s full-fledged Family plan, priced at $14.99 per month in the U.S., which offers up to six accounts. The individual $9.99-per-month Spotify Premium service lets customers listen to music and audio programming on just one device at a time.

The initial launch of Spotify Kids in Ireland will include 80 playlists with approximately 6,000 songs. A company said as the app rolls out more widely, the pool of content will grow over time.

Parents can set up accounts with two distinct buckets of content: “Audio for Younger Kids” with singalongs, lullabies and soundtracks or “Audio for Older Kids” with popular tracks and playlists (which exclude explicit content). Spotify isn’t specifying age ranges for the different sections, leaving it up to parents’ discretion. The app is simpler to use than the regular Spotify app and features the ability to select cutesy, animated avatars for each child’s profile.

The company didn’t provide examples of specific artists or content that will be in Spotify Kids, but a rep said the “Audio for Younger Kids” section will include content licensed from partners including Disney and Nickelodeon.

According to Spotify, it spent several months conducting research with children’s content experts to develop Spotify Kids. The content included in Spotify Kids is vetted by a dedicated team at the company, which includes staffers who hail from Nickelodeon, Disney, Discovery Kids, and Universal Pictures. Another plus: There aren’t any ads in Spotify’s subscription services anyway, so it doesn’t have to deal with various restrictions on serving advertising to minors.

“Spotify Kids is a personalized world bursting with sound, shape and color, where our young listeners can begin a lifelong love of music and stories,“ said Spotify chief premium business officer Alex Norström.

The rollout of Spotify Kids comes after the company recently added several other new features to Premium Family designed specifically for families, including parental controls to filter explicit content, a “Family Mix” playlist with personalized songs for the whole family, and a family hub where primary account holders can manage all settings in one place.

The Spotify Kids app will be available for Spotify Premium Family subscribers at no additional charge for iOS or Android devices once the app launches in-market.

Playlists in Spotify Kids will span various content categories including: movies and TV shows; current hits; activities (like play time, party time, bedtime and homework); genres; seasonal; Spotify originals; and stories. There also will be select playlists for specific artists or groups.

###

From Digiday:

Spotify taps Viacom for content marketing globally

For the next year, Spotify has contracted Viacom’s advanced marketing solutions arm to create custom content, programming and influencer content development for Spotify globally.

The deal covers 15 different markets across North America, Europe and the Middle East, Latin America, Asia Pacific and India. Both Viacom and Spotify declined to disclose financial details of the deal, but emphasized its global scale.

While Viacom isn’t doing the media buys — Spotify will still be placing ads with the help of its agency of record, UM, and its own in-house agency — it will use Viacom’s reach on linear, digital and social platforms to make sure that custom content secures what June Sauvaget, Spotify’s global head of consumer and product marketing, described as “added value and premium inventory.”

While the pairing like that between Spotify and Viacom isn’t a common occurrence today, Sauvaget sees it becoming more of a norm going forward. “Having the upfront discussions means you’re able to secure premium inventory, higher-impact inventory at a lower cost, and that’s always beneficial to a brand,” she said.

Spotify chose to work with Viacom, she said, primarily because of its global reach and because of the variety of different channels and resources it has to reach what she described as micro-audiences. Examples might be the Gen Z audience for Awesomeness TV or the urban demographic for BET, she said. In the U.S., Viacom reaches 80% of consumers ages 18 to 34.

Sauvaget said that Spotify is a platform that doesn’t want to focus solely on paid media to drive its brand proposition; it wants to be able to reach and speak to new audiences who can be users, and because its content is so rooted in culture, especially through music, it needs partners who get those cultural references.

“The way our consumers pick up content is influenced by local nuances in culture,” she said. “We need partners who reference the very nuanced nature of our marketing efforts and are both localized and fluid.”

Last year, Advanced Marketing Solutions, Viacom’s advertising arm, brought in $343 million in revenues, and it has built up its expertise in digital tremendously. It has an influencer marketing firm, Whosay, a Gen Z-friendly digital studio called Awesomeness TV and streaming service, Pluto.

“Depending on the challenge we have, or the audience we’re trying to capture, we can fit into their different solution and have that work hard for us,” Sauvaget said.

“Advertisers can come to Viacom and buy TV, or do an influencer campaign or buy space at our events or buy digital,” Steve Ellis, evp of ad strategy for Viacom, said. “To be an effective marketer today you have to do all of it; you can’t just buy TV or Facebook. You need to be everywhere.”

Ellis said Viacom’s advantage for Spotify lies in its creative, distribution and reach, and an added benefit for Spotify is that the creative isn’t limited to Viacom’s properties alone. It can live and be distributed anywhere — but it’ll no doubt benefit from “premium” placement on Viacom’s channels.

“There’s a certain amount of commitment and a certain amount of output,” Ellis said. “You can distribute something with CPM value and deliver back a clear efficiency and price. That’s really how the economics of the deal are defined.”

Ellis said this deal is symbolic of how the client and agency system is changing. “We’re structuring businesses to address those needs longer-term and with a more holistic view.” The upcoming merger between CBS and Viacom, he said, will only “add even more value.”

Spotify didn’t enter into this partnership with Viacom blindly; it tested out what a potential partnership might look like with a few initial campaigns.

Last year, Viacom worked with Spotify on the RuPaul for Spotify’s Holiday ‘Wrapped’ campaign, and it drove the most traffic to Spotify than any other partner Spotify worked with on its annual campaign.

In June, Spotify enlisted Viacom’s help with the Sophie Turner for Spotify brand campaign “A Playlist for Every Mood or Moment,” and the Instagram story drove seven times the lift in site visits to Spotify in a single day.

Similarly, in the spring, Viacom brought in the stars of Hulu series “Pen15” to promote a Spotify Premium Hulu offer that drove traffic via an Instagram post that had twice more video views than Spotify’s average social posts.

Spotify is currently working with Viacom once more on its end-of-year “Wrapped” campaign, this time beyond just the domestic U.S. market.

Sauvaget said that Viacom isn’t the only publisher Spotify is interested in working with on future custom content, and said the Viacom partnership may be extended beyond a year if they continue to see success.

“My penultimate goal is to grow user acquisition,” she said. “All users are not created equally. When I think of a partner, I want to partner with someone who can bring high-value customers to us. It’s our determination that Viacom can lend us the reach into a consumer base that will be of high value to us. ”

###

From Mobile Marketer:

Spotify partners with Viacom for content marketing push

Brief:

- Spotify hired Viacom's advertising unit, Advanced Marketing Solutions, for content marketing campaigns aimed at boosting the audio streaming platform's audience and paid subscriptions. The agreement covers 15 markets in North America, Europe and the Middle East, Latin America, Asia Pacific and India, Digiday reported.

- Spotify will continue to place ads though its in-house agency and agency of record, UM, while using Viacom's linear, digital and social platforms to create the customized content. Viacom's brands include MTV, VH1, BET, CMT, Comedy Central, Colors, Paramount and Nickelodeon, among others, per its website.

- The partnership with Viacom follows more limited pilot campaigns that helped Spotify to drive web traffic.
Insight:

By working with Viacom on content marketing campaigns, Spotify aims to reach younger audiences who are mostly likely to sign up for its audio streaming platform. Viacom's brands like MTV, BET and VH1 align well with Spotify's music content and goal of reaching Generation Z worldwide. In the U.S., Viacom reaches 80% of consumers ages 18 to 24, per data cited by Digiday, making its channels key to targeting likely subscribers.

Spotify has seen past successes in its collaborations with Viacom's Advanced Marketing Solutions unit, making a stronger partnership in the months ahead more feasible for both companies. Viacom last year supported Spotify with its RuPaul for Spotify's Holiday "Wrapped" campaign that drove record traffic. In the spring, Viacom created a campaign for bundled subscriptions to Spotify Premium and Hulu that featured the stars of Hulu series "Pen15." The companies in June collaborated on a campaign starring "Game of Thrones" star Sophie Turner called "A Playlist for Every Mood or Moment" that included an Instagram Story, and boosted site visits to Spotify by seven times, Digiday reported.

Spotify needs to stand out in the streaming media market amid growing competition from services like Apple Music, which comes preinstalled on the tech giant's products; Amazon Prime Music, which has several tiers of paid and unpaid services; and YouTube Music that Google is bundling with the latest version of the Android mobile operating system. Pandora also has a significant audience in the U.S., while iHeartRadio is available in the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The increasingly crowded market points to why Spotify must develop creative ways to attract valuable subscribers, who likely won't pay for multiple audio services.

Spotify said listeners of its ad-supported service grew by 29% to 141 million people in Q3 from a year earlier, while paid subscriptions climbed 31% to 113 million, it announced in October. To differentiate its platform from rivals and offer a wider range of content for subscribers, Spotify expanded its library of exclusive podcast content. Podcast listenership on the platform grew 39% in Q3 from the prior quarter, as adoption reached almost 14% of total monthly average users, the company said. The global podcast market is forecast to make up 4.5% of all audio ad spend by 2022, hitting $1.6 billion, according to researcher WARC.

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More Nick: Nickelodeon Embarks on New Direction with its Biggest, Most Wide-Ranging Content Slate Ever | Nick Upfront 2019!

Originally published: Thursday, October 31, 2019.
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VIMN Africa Wins a Record of 24 Awards at the 2019 PromaxBDA Africa Awards

VIMN Africa wins a record of 24 awards at the 2019 PromaxBDA Africa Awards


Viacom International Media Networks Africa (VIMN Africa) scooped 24 awards at this year's 2019 PromaxBDA Africa Awards, one of Africa's most recognised media and entertainment awards programmes!

The media and entertainment giant received the Best Promo Team of the Year Award, among eight Gold accolades, nine Silver and seven Bronze. It was nominated in 37 different award categories, including:

  • Best Copy and Scriptwriting
  • Best Image Campaign
  • Best Entertainment Campaign
  • Best Public Service Announcement
  • Sponsorship Campaign

Up by six awards this year, Comedy Central received a total of 11 accolades, five of which were Gold with innovative content productions for Roast of AKA and Public Service Announcement Novemballs.

MTV Base with MTV Baes and Hottest MCs received four awards together with VIMN Africa's Mandela and Women's Day public initiatives. MTV's Flat Man and Best Time of Life achieved recognition with three awards, while BET's Hip Hop Weekend earned a nod. Nickelodeon's Toy Sprint took two award recognitions in both Gold and Silver.

"We are incredibly proud of the tremendous amount of nominations and wins that we received at this year's PromaxBDA Africa Awards," says Alex Okosi, executive vice president (EVP) and managing director (MD) for VIMN Africa and BET International.

"At VIMN Africa, we work hard with our partners to deliver cutting-edge creative and content that resonates with our consumers and clients. These awards are a testament to the power of our creative team," concludes Okosi.

The winners were announced at the PromaxBDA Africa Awards ceremony, which took place on Thursday, 7 November at the Maslow Hotel in Sandton. The winning VIMN Africa campaigns from the PromaxBDA Africa Awards are:

Gold

  • Best Promo Team of the Year — VIMN Africa Creative Services
  • Best Copy and Scriptwriting — Comedy Central Novemballs
  • Best Original Logo Design — Comedy Central Roast of AKA
  • Best Weekly Wonder — MTV Base MTV Baes
  • Best Design Without Footage — Nickelodeon Toy Sprint
  • Best Image Campaign — Comedy Central Novemballs
  • Best Public Service Announcement — Comedy Central Novemballs
  • Best Image Promo — Comedy Central Novemballs

Silver

  • Best Programme Title Sequence — Comedy Central Roast of AKA
  • Best Entertainment Campaign — Comedy Central Roast of AKA
  • Best Copy and Scriptwriting — VIMN Africa's Women's Day
  • Best Partner Sponsorship Campaign — Nickelodeon Toy Sprint
  • Best Documentary or Factual Entertainment Promo — MTV People vs the People
  • Best Outdoor or Print Ad — MTV Base Hottest MCs
  • Best Promo Only Using Programme Footage — MTV Base Blaze The Trail
  • Best Image Campaign — MTV Best Time Of Your Life
  • Best CG Animation — MTV Flatman

Bronze

  • Best Entertainment Promo — Comedy Central Friends, Tom Selleck
  • Best Partner Sponsorship Campaign — Comedy Roast of AKA
  • Best Use Design in Video — VIMN Africa Mandela Day
  • Most Outstanding Design in Promotion — MTV Base MTV Baes
  • Best Music Composition — BET Hip Hop Weekend
  • Best Branding Design — Comedy Central Roast of AKA
  • Best Promo not using Programme Footage — Comedy Central Averagers

For more information, visit www.viacom.com. You can also follow VIMN Africa on Facebook or on Twitter.

Congrats Viacom Africa!

More Nick: Nickelodeon and Emerge Gaming Partner for 'NickX', a New Kid-Focused Competitive Gaming eSports Platform!

Original source: Media Update.
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WOW! Unlimited Media’s Frederator Studios Plans for Significant Expansion in Digital Publishing

WOW! Unlimited Media’s Frederator Studios Plans for Significant Expansion in Digital Publishing

More Than a Dozen New Wow! Wow! Wubbzy and Lucy the Dinosaur E-book Titles to Join Frederator Books’ Growing Content Library


TORONTO and NEW YORK, Nov. 07, 2019 -- Frederator Studios, part of WOW! Unlimited Media’s (TSX-V: WOW / OTCQX: WOWMF) leading next generation kids and youth entertainment business, announced today plans to greatly expand its Frederator Books digital publishing business following significant growth and customer engagement over the past few months. Frederator Books, aimed at preschool to middle-school age children, features an array of titles from its stable of popular children’s characters and franchises led by Wow! Wow! Wubbzy, Catbug and Lucy the Dinosaur.

Kicking off the expansion, Frederator will introduce 13 new Wow! Wow! Wubbzy e-books, inspired by the hit animated preschool series that aired on Nick Jr., this month. The company plans to more than double its library over the next year, which currently consists of nearly 50 titles. Available on leading kids’ e-book platforms such as Amazon and Epic!, Frederator Books has seen very strong initial growth in engagement, with revenue growing approximately three-fold year-over-year from a modest base for the six months ended June 30, 2019.

“A new generation of kids and parents are tapping into the world of digital reading to discover new content,” said Fred Seibert, CEO of Frederator and Chief Creative Officer of WOW!. "This medium is a perfect new opportunity for talented artists and writers, and an ideal moment for Frederator to invest in a growing industry. The expansion will allow current fans of these beloved characters to experience them in new ways, and open a new avenue to introduce fresh, new properties.”

The venture into digital publishing is the latest move by WOW! Unlimited Media to increase its presence at the forefront of the ever-evolving animation and kids’ entertainment landscape. The company has rapidly built a strong production portfolio with a number of high-end properties, including Castlevania, a top-rated animation series on Netflix, ReBoot: The Guardian Code (Netflix), Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures (with Mattel for Netflix), Bee & PuppyCat (Cartoon Hangover), Costume Quest (Amazon) and Spy Kids: Mission Critical (Netflix).

The news comes as digital publishing is on the rise in the kids entertainment industry, with Viacom International Media Networks launching a new eBook subscription app BooKids by Nickelodeon in September, which features titles starring the kidnet’s IPs, as well as Nick Stories in Scandinavia. Amazon released its first eReader aimed specifically at kids last month and loaded it with more than 1,000 eBooks. Beyond digital books, in the past year publishing as a whole has seen a resurgence as a growing number of streamers and burgeoning prodcos are turning the page to look for books that are ripe for adaptation, and which they can turn into popular content.

About WOW! Unlimited Media
WOW! Unlimited is creating a leading animation-focused entertainment company by producing top-end content and building brands and audiences on the most engaging media platforms. The Company produces animation in its two established studios: Frederator Studios in Los Angeles, which has a 20-year track record; and one of Canada's largest, multi-faceted animation production studios, Mainframe Studios in Vancouver, which has a 25-year track record. The Company’s media assets include Channel Frederator Network, on YouTube, as well as WOW! branded programming on Crave, Canada’s leading streaming entertainment platform, owned by Bell Media. The Company operates out of offices in Toronto, New York, Vancouver and Los Angeles. The common voting shares of the Company (the “Common Voting Shares”) and variable voting shares of the Company (the “Variable Voting Shares”) are listed on the TSX Venture Exchange (the “TSX-V”) (TSX-V: WOW) and the OTCQX Best Market (OTCQX: WOWMF). https://www.wowunlimited.co

About Frederator
Frederator Networks is a pioneer in streaming video and is a leading independent producer of animation for streaming services, linear television and on-line video platforms. Over the past 20 years, Frederator Studios has produced 19 series and more than 250 short films for and with partners including Netflix, Amazon, Google, Nickelodeon (The Fairly OddParents, Oh Yeah! Cartoons, My Life As A Teenage Robot, The Nicktoons Film Festival, ChalkZone, Random! Cartoons, Fanboy and Chum Chum), Nick Jr. (Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!), Sony Pictures Animation, and Cartoon Network. Frederator Digital has built one of the largest animation networks on YouTube as well as maintaining O&O channels to test production concepts and build audience awareness. The various O&O channels target audiences for video game enthusiasts, movie and TV lovers as well as all things animation. Frederator Books is a digital publisher which further extends the company's revenue opportunities from IP and builds audiences for its properties. The company maintains offices in Los Angeles and New York. https://frederator.com

More Nick: Nickelodeon Embarks on New Direction with its Biggest, Most Wide-Ranging Content Slate Ever!

H/T: Kidscreen.
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ViacomCBS Shakes Up Creative Executive Ranks Ahead of Merger; Brian Robbins to Oversee AwesomenessTV

Viacom and CBS Announce Content and Digital Leadership


November 11, 2019 08:00 AM Eastern Standard Time

NEW YORK--CBS (NYSE: CBS.A, CBS) and Viacom (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA) today announced senior appointments for ViacomCBS’ content and digital leadership. These appointments, which will be effective upon closing, will enable ViacomCBS to deliver on its distinct competitive position as one of the most important content producers and providers in the world.

Content Leaders

ViacomCBS will have a portfolio of powerful consumer brands and one of the largest libraries of iconic intellectual property, spanning every genre and appealing to consumers of all ages and demographics. The combined company’s library will comprise 140,000+ premium TV episodes and 3,600+ film titles, including fan favorites such as Star Trek and Mission: Impossible. ViacomCBS will also have more than 750 series ordered or in production, as well as a major Hollywood film studio, Paramount Pictures. The combined company will have a content spend of more than $13 billion – one of the largest in the industry.

“ViacomCBS will be one of the largest premium content creators in the world, with the capacity to produce content for both our own platforms and for others,” said Bob Bakish, President and Chief Executive Officer, Viacom, who will serve as President and Chief Executive Officer of ViacomCBS upon close. “This talented team of content leaders will work together to ensure we realize the full power of our brands, our deep relationships with the creative community and our intellectual property to drive our growth as a combined company.”

Following are ViacomCBS’ content leaders, who will manage the creative and business operations of the company’s brands and help assess how best to distribute programming – including across both owned and third-party linear and digital platforms – based on brand filters and other criteria:

- Jim Gianopulos will oversee Filmed Entertainment, continuing as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Paramount Pictures, a role that includes oversight of Paramount Animation, Paramount Features, Paramount Players and Paramount TV.

- Chris McCarthy, President of MTV, VH1, CMT and Logo, will serve as President of Entertainment & Youth Brands, ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks – adding Comedy Central, Paramount Network, Smithsonian Channel and TV Land brands and their respective content studios to his current portfolio of MTV, VH1, CMT and Logo.

- David Nevins, Chief Creative Officer, CBS, and Chairman and CEO, Showtime Networks, will oversee CBS Television Studios, the CBS Television Network’s Entertainment division, the Showtime Networks and Pop, as well as the programming of CBS All Access. He will also have oversight of CBS’ interest in The CW, a joint venture between CBS and Warner Bros. Entertainment. In addition, Nevins will oversee BET, which will continue to be led by Scott Mills as President of BET.

- Carolyn Kroll Reidy will lead the company’s publishing assets, continuing in her role as President and Chief Executive Officer of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

- Brian Robbins, President of Nickelodeon, will oversee the company’s kids and young adult-focused offerings as President, Kids & Family Entertainment, ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks. In addition to Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, Nick Jr., TeenNick, Nicktoons and Nickelodeon Studios, he will now oversee Awesomeness, which he co-founded and was acquired by Viacom in 2018.

Joe Ianniello, as previously announced, will serve as Chairman and CEO of CBS, overseeing CBS-branded assets such as the CBS Television Network (including CBS Entertainment, CBS News, and CBS Sports), CBS Television Studios, CBS Interactive (including CBS All Access) and CBS Television Stations.

ViacomCBS will also form a new Content Council, comprising the content leaders across the company and chaired by Nevins, to ensure these leaders and other senior executives are working together to maximize the use of IP and talent relationships across the combined company.

Digital Leaders

ViacomCBS’ portfolio of leading streaming assets will include CBS All Access and Showtime, which deliver premium, branded content live and on demand to millions of subscribers; Pluto TV, the leading free, advertising-supported streaming TV service in the U.S.; and targeted niche products such as BET+, CBSN, CBS Sports HQ, ET Live and Noggin.

“Our content scale will support our streaming strategy, which will build on the rapidly scaling advertising and subscription-based products we already have in the market,” Bakish said. “The executives we announced today bring complementary and deep experience in both subscription and ad-supported streaming businesses, and will work together to create a differentiated streaming ecosystem in the market.”

The following are ViacomCBS’ digital leaders, who will collaborate with the company’s content leaders to grow the company’s already expansive digital businesses and footprint and drive an integrated streaming strategy, taking advantage of the breadth and depth of ViacomCBS’ combined content portfolio and global infrastructure:

- Marc DeBevoise, President and COO, CBS Interactive, will serve as Chief Digital Officer, ViacomCBS, and President and CEO, CBS Interactive. As such, he will provide overall leadership for the combined company’s technology and digital operations across its broad range of digital assets, including its subscription, live and vertical ad-supported direct-to-consumer streaming services and major internet properties. His team will also be responsible for Viacom Digital Studios as well as its partnerships with technology, digital video and social platforms. In addition, he will continue to lead CBS Interactive and its digital businesses, including those of the CBS Television Network and CNET Media Group and its portfolio of streaming services including CBS All Access, CBSN, CBS Sports HQ and ET Live.

-- Kelly Day, President, Viacom Digital Studios, will continue to lead the digital content strategy and initiative to create and expand original programming and branded content across leading and emerging social platforms. In this role, reporting to DeBevoise, she will look to expand this initiative from brands including MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and BET across the combined company’s content portfolio.

-- Phil Wiser, Chief Technology Officer, CBS, will serve as Chief Technology Officer for the combined company, reporting to DeBevoise. As CTO, he will be responsible for the global technology strategy, shared services, operations and transformation for ViacomCBS.

- Tom Ryan, CEO and Co-Founder of Pluto TV, will continue to lead Pluto TV, which delivers more than 200 live and original channels and thousands of on-demand movies in partnership with 170 TV networks, movie studios, publishers and digital media companies, including Viacom and CBS. In this role, Tom will oversee all facets of the company’s business, continuing to guide it both strategically and operationally through its rapid growth. In addition to further scaling the platform in the U.S. and extending the company's category lead domestically, he will work closely with the ViacomCBS Networks International team on Pluto TV’s global expansion, including its continued European growth as well as its upcoming launch across Latin America.

The merger remains subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close by early December.

Biographies

- Jim Gianopulos has served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Paramount Pictures since August 2017. In his role as Chairman and CEO of Paramount, he oversees the studio’s film and television operations worldwide, including production, marketing, distribution and all other facets. He is also charged with setting a strategy for Paramount, including developing new content, strengthening Paramount’s slate with co-branded releases from Viacom flagship brands, and expanding the studio’s global footprint. Gianopulos has been a leading figure in the global entertainment industry for more than 30 years. For 16 years, he served as Chairman and CEO of Fox Filmed Entertainment, overseeing Twentieth Century Fox, Fox 2000 Pictures, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Fox International Productions and Twentieth Century Fox Animation/Blue Sky Studios. Previously, Gianopulos served as President of 20th Century Fox International. Prior to joining the company, he held senior positions at Columbia Pictures and Paramount. He began his career as an attorney specializing in entertainment law.

- Chris McCarthy, President of MTV, VH1, CMT and Logo, is known for his successful track record in transforming businesses and creating cultural hits. After being named President of MTV in October 2016, McCarthy quickly returned the brand to #1 with young audiences, reaching more people across cable, social, streaming and events than any other brand. Prior to MTV, McCarthy led VH1’s reinvention driving it to record growth. Creating cultural hits are at the center of both brands’ strategy, evidenced by having 8 of the top 10 and 15 of the top 25 shows. McCarthy credits his success to strong leaders and collaborative teams who embrace a culture of “creativity drives everything we do.” McCarthy joined Viacom in 2004 as a freelancer and rose up the ranks holding various positions of responsibility from marketing, strategy, operations and development. The recipient of multiple Emmy Awards and a Peabody, McCarthy earned an M.B.A. from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Commerce and Engineering from Drexel University.

- David Nevins has served as CBS’ Chief Creative Officer and Chairman and CEO of Showtime Networks Inc. since October 2018, overseeing programming, marketing and research across CBS Television Studios, the CBS Television Network's Entertainment division, Showtime Networks, and programming for CBS All Access, as well as The CW, a joint venture between CBS Corporation and Warner Bros. Entertainment. As Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Showtime Networks Inc., Nevins oversees all aspects of Showtime Networks Inc. and its channels, including programming, distribution, business development, finance, marketing, creative, digital media, scheduling, research, acquisitions, network operations, home entertainment, business affairs and corporate communications teams, as well as SHOWTIME Sports®. He works closely with CBS Corporation's international and domestic distribution groups on the monetization of Showtime Networks content around the world. Prior to joining Showtime in 2010 as Entertainment President, Nevins was an Emmy Award-winning producer and network programming executive, including President of Imagine Television; Executive Vice President of Programming at Fox Broadcasting Company; and Senior Vice President, Primetime Series at NBC.

- Carolyn Kroll Reidy became President and Chief Executive Officer of Simon & Schuster, Inc. in January 2008. In this role, she is responsible for all the publishing and operations of Simon & Schuster’s numerous publishing groups as well as its international companies in Australia, Canada, India and the United Kingdom. Under her leadership, Simon & Schuster has taken an industry-leading position in bringing its works to consumers using new digital formats and distribution capabilities, including ebooks and digital audio. Reidy has also led the company’s expansion into new territories, with the founding in 2011 of Simon & Schuster India, while making numerous strategic moves that have added to its portfolio and ensure its presence in every segment of the publishing marketplace. Reidy first joined Simon & Schuster in 1992 as President of the Trade Division, before being named President of the Adult Publishing Group in 2001. Prior to Simon & Schuster, Reidy was President and Publisher of Avon Books, after having worked at William Morrow and Random House, where she was Publisher of Vintage Books and Associate Publisher of the Random House imprint. Reidy has been named one of “The 50 Women to Watch,” by the Wall Street Journal, and is a recipient of the Matrix Award from the New York Women in Communications. She is a graduate of Middlebury College, and holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in English from Indiana University, where in 2011 she was recipient of the university’s Distinguished Alumni Award.

- Brian Robbins has served as President of Nickelodeon since October 2018, overseeing the company’s creative and business operations and helping to evolve the brand for a new generation of young audiences. Previously, he served as President of Paramount Pictures’ Paramount Players division, where he worked closely with Nickelodeon and Viacom’s other brands to identify talent and properties to be developed into co-branded feature films. Robbins co-founded the multi-platform media company Awesomeness in 2012 and served as Chief Executive Officer. He also co-founded the production company Tollins/Robbins Productions and was the Founder and President of Varsity Pictures. In this role, he executive produced numerous television hits for teens and young audiences, including the popular Nickelodeon series Kenan and Kel and All That, the latter of which Robbins adapted into the Nickelodeon feature film Good Burger. Robbins also executive produced Blue Mountain State for Spike TV (now Paramount Network) and produced and/or directed the Paramount films Varsity Blues, Coach Carter and Hardball. His other credits include the television series Smallville and One Tree Hill for CW, and Disney Channel’s Sonny with a Chance and So Random. His film credits include Disney’s Wild Hogs and The Shaggy Dog; DreamWorks’ Norbit and A Thousand Words; and Sony Pictures’ Radio. Robbins began his career as an actor, writer and producer, and has received the Directors Guild Award, a Peabody Award, the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences’ Pioneer Prize.

- Marc DeBevoise has served as President and Chief Operating Officer of CBS Interactive since 2016 and has also held other executive roles at CBS Interactive, including EVP and GM of CBS Digital Media and SVP and GM CBS Entertainment Digital. Earlier in his career he was the SVP of Digital Media, Business Development and Strategy for premium subscription service Starz, held various roles in both Digital Media and Business Development at NBC Universal and was in the Technology, Media & Telecommunications Investment Banking Group at JPMorgan. DeBevoise received his M.B.A. with distinction in Entertainment, Media & Technology and Finance from New York University’s Stern School of Business and his B.A. in Economics and Computer Science from Tufts University. He is a member of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, a board member of Limelight Networks (NASDAQ: LLNW), a leading provider of edge cloud services, and the Board President of The Door, a non-profit organization providing youth development services.

- Kelly Day has served as the President of Viacom Digital Studios since November 2017, overseeing Viacom’s digital strategy, including the expansion of Viacom’s original programming across the leading online video and social media platforms. Under her leadership, Viacom reached new heights in audience engagement, becoming one of the top 5 properties in media and entertainment. She previously served as the Chief Business Officer and Chief Digital Officer of multi-platform media company Awesomeness, where she was responsible for international expansion, global distribution strategies and revenue across television, mobile and OTT providers, also driving the company’s product and technology investments. Prior to joining Awesomeness, she served as CEO of venture-backed company Blip Networks, prior to its acquisition by Maker Studios, and also led various digital and e-commerce businesses at media and entertainment companies, including Discovery Communications, The Knot, and AOL. Day has advised several media and technology start-ups and she currently serves on the Board of Directors for Blue Ant Media and NATPE.

- Phil Wiser has been Chief Technology Officer of CBS since 2018. Prior to CBS, Wiser was chief technology officer at Hearst. Wiser worked across the portfolio of Hearst businesses including cable networks such as ESPN and A&E, more than 30 broadcast television stations, magazines, newspapers and digital media brands. Before joining Hearst, Wiser was chairman and president of Sezmi Corporation, a technology company he founded in 2006 that pioneered the delivery of Internet television subscriptions. Wiser was chief technology officer at Sony Corporation of America. Prior to Sony, he built the one of the earliest online music distribution platforms as the founder of Liquid Audio, where he was chief technology officer. Wiser graduated from Stanford University with a master’s degree in electrical engineering, and he graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park with a bachelor’s degree in the same field, summa cum laude. Wiser serves on the board of trustees at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, and the board of visitors at Clark School of Engineering, University of Maryland.

- Tom Ryan has served the CEO and Co-Founder of Pluto TV since early 2014. Under his leadership, Pluto TV became the leading free streaming TV service in the U.S. with more than 18 million monthly active users tuning into over 200 live channels and thousands of on-demand movies and TV shows. He also led Pluto TV through its successful acquisition by Viacom in January 2019. Earlier in his career, Tom served as CEO of Threadless, an online art community and e-commerce company, from 2008 to 2012. Previously he was Senior Vice President of Digital Strategy and Business Development at EMI Music and was part of the early team at Virgin Mobile USA. Tom also co-founded Cductive, a pioneering online music service, which was merged with eMusic in 1999.

About CBS

CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS.A and CBS) is a mass media company that creates and distributes industry-leading content across a variety of platforms to audiences around the world. The Company has businesses with origins that date back to the dawn of the broadcasting age as well as new ventures that operate on the leading edge of media. CBS owns the most-watched television network in the U.S. and one of the world’s largest libraries of entertainment content, making its brand –"the Eye” – one of the most-recognized in business. The Company’s operations span virtually every field of media and entertainment, including cable, publishing, local TV, film and interactive. CBS’ businesses include CBS Television Network, The CW (a joint venture between CBS Corporation and Warner Bros. Entertainment), Network 10 Australia, CBS Television Studios, CBS Global Distribution Group, CBS Consumer Products, CBS Home Entertainment, CBS Interactive, CBS All Access, the Company’s direct-to-consumer digital streaming subscription service, CBS Sports Network, CBS Films, Showtime Networks, Pop, Smithsonian Networks, Simon & Schuster, CBS Television Stations and CBS Experiences. For more information, go to https://www.cbscorporation.com/.

About Viacom

Viacom (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA) creates entertainment experiences that drive conversation and culture around the world. Through television, film, digital media, live events, merchandise and solutions, its brands connect with diverse, young and young at heart audiences in more than 180 countries.

For more information on Viacom and its businesses, visit http://www.Viacom.com. Keep up with Viacom news by following it on Twitter (twitter.com/Viacom), Facebook (facebook.com/Viacom) and LinkedIn (linkedin.com/company/Viacom).

Important Information About the Pending Merger Between CBS and Viacom and Where To Find It

In connection with the pending merger between CBS Corporation (“CBS”) and Viacom Inc. (“Viacom”), CBS has filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) a Registration Statement on Form S-4 (No. 333‑234238) (the “Registration Statement”) that includes a joint consent solicitation statement of CBS and Viacom and that also constitutes a prospectus of CBS (the “joint consent solicitation statement / prospectus”). The Registration Statement was declared effective by the SEC on October 25, 2019. Viacom and CBS commenced mailing the definitive joint consent solicitation statement / prospectus to Viacom stockholders and CBS stockholders on or about October 28, 2019. This communication is not a substitute for the joint consent solicitation statement / prospectus or Registration Statement or any other document which CBS or Viacom may file with the SEC. INVESTORS AND SECURITY HOLDERS OF CBS AND VIACOM ARE URGED TO READ THE REGISTRATION STATEMENT, WHICH INCLUDES THE JOINT CONSENT SOLICITATION STATEMENT / PROSPECTUS, AND ANY OTHER RELEVANT DOCUMENTS THAT ARE FILED OR WILL BE FILED WITH THE SEC, AS WELL AS ANY AMENDMENTS OR SUPPLEMENTS TO THESE DOCUMENTS, CAREFULLY AND IN THEIR ENTIRETY BECAUSE THEY CONTAIN OR WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE PENDING MERGER AND RELATED MATTERS. Investors and security holders may obtain free copies of the Registration Statement, which includes the joint consent solicitation statement / prospectus, and other documents filed with the SEC by CBS and Viacom through the website maintained by the SEC at or by contacting the investor relations department of CBS (+1-212-975-4321 or +1-877-227-0787; investorrelations@CBS.com) or Viacom (+1-212-846-6700 or +1-800-516-4399; investor.relations@Viacom.com).

No Offer or Solicitation

This communication is for informational purposes only and is not intended to and does not constitute an offer to subscribe for, buy or sell, or the solicitation of an offer to subscribe for, buy or sell, or an invitation to subscribe for, buy or sell any securities or a solicitation of any vote or approval in any jurisdiction, nor shall there be any sale, issuance or transfer of securities in any jurisdiction in which such offer, invitation, sale or solicitation would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such jurisdiction. No offer of securities shall be made except by means of a prospectus meeting the requirements of Section 10 of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and otherwise in accordance with applicable law.

Cautionary Notes on Forward-Looking Statements

This communication contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. In this context, forward-looking statements often address expected future business and financial performance and financial condition, and often contain words such as “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” “seek,” “see,” “will,” “would,” “may,” “target,” similar expressions and variations or negatives of these words. Forward-looking statements by their nature address matters that are, to different degrees, uncertain, such as statements about the consummation of the pending merger and the anticipated benefits thereof. These and other forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future results and are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in any forward-looking statements, including the failure to consummate the pending merger or to make any filing or take other action required to consummate such transaction in a timely matter or at all. Important risk factors that may cause such a difference include, but are not limited to: (i) the pending merger may not be completed on anticipated terms and timing, (ii) a condition to closing of the pending merger may not be satisfied, including obtaining regulatory approvals, (iii) the anticipated tax treatment of the pending merger may not be obtained, (iv) the potential impact of unforeseen liabilities, future capital expenditures, revenues, costs, expenses, earnings, synergies, economic performance, indebtedness, financial condition and losses on the future prospects, business and management strategies for the management, expansion and growth of the combined business after the consummation of the pending merger, (v) litigation relating to the pending merger against CBS, Viacom or their respective directors, (vi) potential adverse reactions or changes to business relationships resulting from the announcement or completion of the pending merger, (vii) any negative effects of the announcement, pendency or consummation of the pending merger on the market price of CBS’ or Viacom’s common stock and on CBS’ or Viacom’s operating results, (viii) risks associated with third party contracts containing consent and/or other provisions that may be triggered by the pending merger, (ix) the risks and costs associated with the integration of, and the ability of CBS and Viacom to integrate, the businesses successfully and to achieve anticipated synergies, (x) the risk that disruptions from the pending merger will harm CBS’ or Viacom’s business, including current plans and operations, (xi) the ability of CBS or Viacom to retain and hire key personnel and uncertainties arising from leadership changes, (xii) legislative, regulatory and economic developments, (xiii) the other risks described in CBS’ and Viacom’s most recent annual reports on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, and (xiv) management’s response to any of the aforementioned factors.

These risks, as well as other risks associated with the pending merger, are more fully discussed in the joint consent solicitation statement / prospectus included in the Registration Statement. While the list of factors presented here and the list of factors presented in the Registration Statement are considered representative, no such list should be considered to be a complete statement of all potential risks and uncertainties. Unlisted factors may present significant additional obstacles to the realization of forward-looking statements. Consequences of material differences in results as compared with those anticipated in the forward-looking statements could include, among other things, business disruption, operational problems, financial loss, legal liability to third parties and similar risks, any of which could have a material adverse effect on CBS’ or Viacom’s consolidated financial condition, results of operations, credit rating or liquidity. Neither CBS nor Viacom assumes any obligation to publicly provide revisions or updates to any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, should circumstances change, except as otherwise required by securities and other applicable laws.

###

Original post:

Chris McCarthy, David Nevins, Brian Robbins and Marc DeBevoise add new responsibilities, while Kent Alterman and Sarah Levy prepare to depart after the merger.

ViacomCBS continues to shake up its executive ranks ahead of its expected merger next month.

The company is expanding the oversight of Chris McCarthy, who currently oversees the MTV, VH1, Logo and CMT networks. McCarthy will add oversight of Comedy Central, Paramount Network, TV Land and Smithsonian Channel in the shakeup, according to a source familiar with the matter.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the news.

David Nevins, chief creative officer of CBS and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Showtime Networks, will add oversight of BET Networks in the shift. Scott Mills will continue to run BET, but will now report to Nevins. Brian Robbins will continue to oversee Nickelodeon (he was named president of the kids channel a year ago), but will now add oversight of AwesomenessTV, which Viacom acquired in 2018.

Marc DeBevoise, who is CEO for CBS Interactive, will oversee digital operations for the combined company. Kelly Day, who runs Viacom Digital Studios (VDS), will report to DeBevoise, though Pluto TV CEO Tom Ryan will continue to report to Bob Bakish, who will be CEO of the combined company.

Two senior executives will be leaving the company: Kent Alterman, who currently leads Comedy Central, Paramount Network and TV Land, and Sarah Levy, who is Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Viacom Media Networks, will both exit after the merger closes.

McCarthy has been a rising star at Viacom under Bakish. After being promoted to president at MTV, he expanded his purview to include VH1, Logo and CMT, as Viacom continued to centralize oversight of its cable brands. The exec has helped revitalize MTV with a string of revivals of classic unscripted shows to a series of ratings upticks over the past several quarters.

Alterman, meanwhile, was handed Paramount Network — Viacom’s broad-skewing cabler (formerly Spike) — last year. His predecessor, Kevin Kay, was pushed out a year after its rebranding. Comedy Central, under Alterman’s leadership, has seen 10 consecutive quarters of year-over-year share growth.

Alterman and Levy are the latest longtime Viacom executives to depart in recent years. Nickelodeon chief Cyma Zarghami and BET chief executive Debra Lee both exited last year.

Bakish’s larger plan to rejuvenate Viacom was to focus on key brands Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., BET, Comedy Central, MTV and Paramount Network. All have changed leadership since Bakish arrived at Viacom.

With the Viacom-CBS merger expected to close in December, Nevins will continue his upward rise. The Showtime exec was given oversight of CBS’ entertainment unit following CEO Les Moonves’ ouster and will now oversee BET, which recently launched its own subscription streaming service, BET+. Mills oversees the linear network and streamer, the latter of which is a partnership between Viacom and Tyler Perry.

The shakeup is the latest sign that media giants are laying the groundwork for consolidation amid dwindling linear TV ratings and the explosion of streaming services.

Viacom, pre-CBS merger, consolidated MTV, VH1, Logo and CMT, all under McCarthy, for example, eliminating development and marketing executives in the process as it centralized all operations under McCarthy and the team he built at MTV.

Viacom and CBS set up an integration management office in September and have been announcing a number of executives for the combined company since.

Original source: The Hollywood Reporter.

From Deadline:

ViacomCBS Shuffle: Kent Alterman Out, Chris McCarthy, David Nevins Gain Turf

Just before closing their long-anticipated merger, Viacom and CBS are shaking up their TV executive ranks, according to insiders familiar with the moves.

Comedy Central veteran Kent Alterman is leaving the fold when the merger closes in the coming weeks. MTV Networks boss Chris McCarthy and CBS Chief Creative Officer David Nevins are among those adding to their turf.

McCarthy has steered Logo and progressively gained oversight of VH1, MTV and CMT, sparking ratings turnarounds and helping Viacom see its first quarterly ad-sales gains in years. He will become president of entertainment and youth brands. That will give Comedy Central, TV Land and Paramount Network to him, as well as Smithsonian Channel, which is owned by CBS. He will continue to report to CEO Bob Bakish.

Alterman, who spent two decades in various roles at Viacom, made his biggest mark at Comedy Central, where he shepherded defining hits like Key & Peele and Inside Amy Schumer. Along with Alterman, another 20-year Viacom veteran, Sarah Levy, is departing. The COO of Viacom’s Media Networks group, which includes U.S. cable networks and international, won’t be replaced.

Nevins, who got a big promotion a year ago from CEO of Showtime to a much broader role across CBS overseeing the broadcast network, Pop and Showtime, will now look after Viacom’s BET. Scott Mills will remain the head of BET, reporting to Nevins.

After the reshuffling, Tom Ryan will continue to run Pluto, reporting to Bakish. He had previously reported to Viacom CFO Wade Davis, whose departure post-close had already been confirmed.

Kelly Day will remain atop Viacom Digital Studios, which will now fall under the auspices of CBS Interactive chief Marc DeBevoise.

Nickelodeon chief Brian Robbins, who founded AwesomenessTV, which Viacom acquired in 2018, is adding oversight of youth brand while continuing to lead Nick. He will now have the title of President, Kid & Family Entertainment.

The moves were first announced in the Wall Street Journal and are expected to be formally announced Monday.

Both CBS and Viacom are reporting their quarterly earnings next week, their last presentations to Wall Street as separate companies.

###

From TheWrap:

Comedy Central Head Kent Alterman Out Amid ViacomCBS Restructuring

Wall Street Journal reports that CBS’ David Nevins and MTV’s Chris McCarthy will expand their oversight

Viacom and CBS are preparing to make major shifts to their creative leadership as part of their upcoming merger, and at least two major heads are on their way out.

The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that Kent Alterman, longtime head of Comedy Central, will be exiting the company as part of the leadership changes. His network will be overseen by MTV/VH1 head Chris McCarthy, who will become president of entertainment and youth brands and add TV Land, Paramount Network and Smithsonian Channel to his portfolio. McCarthy already oversees MTV, VH1, CMT and Logo and will report to ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish.

Along with Alterman, Viacom Media Networks COO Sarah Levy will also be leaving with no replacement selected. Levy oversaw business operations for Viacom’s networks starting in early 2018 and had worked at Viacom for 20 years, mostly as COO of Nickelodeon.

CBS chief creative officer David Nevins will oversee Viacom’s BET Networks in addition to CBS and Showtime. Marc DeBevoise, CEO of CBS Interactive, will oversee digital operations for both CBS and Viacom. CBS Television Studios and Paramount Television will continue to operate independently after the merger closes in early December.

The new leadership structure will be officially announced on Monday. CBS and Viacom did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s requests for comment.

###

More Nick: Nickelodeon Assembles Writing Team for New Animated 'Star Trek' Series!

Originally published: Monday, November 11, 2019 at 00:47 GMT.
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J Balvin, Louis De Guzman and Nickelodeon Launch SpongeBob SquarePants Collection at PacSun

Fresh from teaming-up with Modernica and Louis De Guzman for a homeware collection and Ian Delucca on a set of grillz, J Balvin has revealed the latest installment of his ongoing SpongeBob SquarePants collaboration! The Colombian reggaeton icon has once again collaborated with Louis De Guzman to launch a SpongeBob SquarePants apparel collection to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the beloved Nickelodeon animated series. The line is now available to purchase at PacSun.


The J Balvin x Louis De Guzman clothing collection encompasses two short-sleeved t-shirts (a SpongeBob Tie-Dyed T-Shirt and a Patrick T-Shirt) as well as long-sleeved tee, and a SpongeBob hoodie. The collection will also expand to include two SpongeBob candles.

The clothing part of the collection is available in a range of sizes. Items in the line have price points between $38-$88 (USD); £32-76 (GBP).

In additional news, Chicago’s own Louis De Guzman, locally-based visual artist and designer, is hosting a pop-up with Nickelodeon to showcase his newest body of work, designed in collaboration with Latin superstar, J Balvin, for SpongeBob SquarePants’ 20 year anniversary. De Guzman will take over a Wicker Park activation space for five days in November, filling it with the collection of eclectic art pieces, apparel, and home goods curated in gallery format, for the Chicago public to enjoy. November 12th through the 16th, fine art and cartoon lovers alike are invited to immerse themselves in De Guzman and Balvin’s contemporary take on Spongebob’s underwater world in celebration of the show’s impact on pop culture, at 1714 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL. For details, visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/spongebob-squarepants-x-louis-de-guzman-x-j-balvin-gallery-pop-up-opening-tickets-80301870055

Check out the SpongeBob x Louis De Guzman x J Balvin collection below!:


J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob Tie-Dyed T-Shirt

Celebrate 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants with this epic J Balvin x Louis De Guzman Collection. The SpongeBob Tie-Dyed T-Shirt features a bold multicolor tie-dyed fabric and a custom SpongeBob graphic reworked by Chicago-based visual artist Louis De Guzman and music artist J Balvin.

Multicolor tie-dyed tee
J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob graphic
Crew neck
Short sleeves
Model is wearing size medium


J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob Hoodie

Celebrate 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants with this epic J Balvin x Louis De Guzman Collection. The SpongeBob Hoodie features a classic hoodie construction and custom SpongeBob graphics reworked by Chicago-based visual artist Louis De Guzman and music artist J Balvin throughout.

Solid color hoodie
J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob graphics
Drawstring hood with contrast strings
Long sleeves
Ribbed cuffs and hem
Kangaroo pocket
Soft fleece fabric
Model is wearing size medium


J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob Long Sleeve T-Shirt

Celebrate 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants with this epic J Balvin x Louis De Guzman Collection. The SpongeBob Long Sleeve T-Shirt features a solid color design and custom SpongeBob graphics reworked by Chicago-based visual artist Louis De Guzman and music artist J Balvin throughout.

Solid color tee
J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob graphics
Crew neck
Long sleeves
Ribbed neck and cuffs
Model is wearing size medium


J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob Patrick T-Shirt

Celebrate 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants with this epic J Balvin x Louis De Guzman Collection. The SpongeBob Patrick T-Shirt features solid color design and a custom Patrick Star graphic reworked by Chicago-based visual artist Louis De Guzman and music artist J Balvin.

Solid color tee
J Balvin x Louis De Guzman Patrick graphic
Crew neck
Short sleeves
Model is wearing size medium


J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob Candle

Celebrate 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants with this epic J Balvin x Louis De Guzman Collection. The SpongeBob Candle features a custom SpongeBob graphic reworked by Chicago-based visual artist Louis De Guzman and music artist J Balvin throughout.

Glass candle
Custom J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob graphic


J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob Candle

Celebrate 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants with this epic J Balvin x Louis De Guzman Collection. The SpongeBob Candle features a custom SpongeBob graphic reworked by Chicago-based visual artist Louis De Guzman and music artist J Balvin throughout.

Glass candle
Custom J Balvin x Louis De Guzman SpongeBob graphic



The SpongeBob apparel joins other recent fashion collaborations from brands such as Unimatic, Nike and Timberland, Pharrell Williams' Billionaire Boys Club ICECREAM, Edward Venero's VNRO, a skateboard collection from Santa Cruz Skateboards, a homeware collaboration from Modernica with Chicago-based visual artist Louis De Guzman and global music artist J Balvin, and a Grillz collaboration between J Balvin and Ian Delucca.

SpongeBob SquarePants, which was recently greenlit for a 13th season, has reigned as the number-one kids’ animated series on TV for the last 17 years, while generating a universe of beloved characters, pop culture catchphrases and memes, theatrical releases, consumer products, a Tony award-winning Broadway musical which is now touring North America and a global fan base. SpongeBob SquarePants is seen in more than 208 countries and territories, translated in 55+ languages, and averages more than 100 million total viewers every quarter. SpongeBob SquarePants is created by Stephen Hillenburg and produced by Nickelodeon in Burbank, Calif.

Nickelodeon's is currently in the midst of the network's "Best Year Ever", a year-long global celebration of one of the most iconic TV series and characters ever created. The “Best Year Ever” launched with the premiere of “SpongeBob’s Big Birthday Blowout,” an original mixed live-action and animated special earlier this summer, and leads up to the Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies theatrical, The SpongeBob Movie: It's a Wonderful Sponge, coming May 2020.

A CG-animated prequel spin-off series, Kamp Koral, following 10-year-old SpongeBob SquarePants during his summer at sleepaway camp, is also slated to premiere during Summer 2020.

More Nick: 'The SpongeBob Musical: Live On Stage!' to Debut on Nickelodeon in December 2019!
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