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An Explosion in Demand for Animation

As the war for audiences (or audience segments) heats up, one of the key battlegrounds is kids entertainment — which means one of the biggest battlegrounds is being fought over cartoons like “Kung Fu Panda,” “Captain Underpants” and “Curious George”.

“This is the biggest boom in kids programming production that we have ever seen,” said Michael Hirsh, chief executive of WoW, which makes cartoon series such as “Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures” for Netflix.

The Kids segment is key to success. Viewership is heavily driven by children. Sixty percent of Netflix subscribers globally watch kids and family programming, most of which is animated shows, said Melissa Cobb, vice president of Kids and Family at Netflix. Executives at another service say that families tend to cancel at nearly half the rate of the average subscriber.

Netflix is also interested in animated content because it travels well around the globe, said Ms. Cobb. Netflix over the past 18 months has assembled a team of about 40 executives around the world to commission and develop children’s programming, she said.

The new streamers (Netflix, Amazon, Hulu etc) are competing for this segment with the traditional providers like Disney, Turner’s Cartoon Network, Viacom’s Nickelodeon.

But streaming services pay better. They’re offering up to $1.2 million per 30-minute episode (for global rights), which is double what the traditional entertainment companies generally pay.

Additionally, Amazon, Hulu and Netflix have allowed some companies to maintain the rights to sell merchandise based on their shows, so long as Netflix can own the worldwide streaming rights. Toys and other spin-offs from animated shows are one of the main ways producers make money from shows.

The boom is benefiting both big companies and startups. Animation production work has helped increase revenue at Technicolor’s visual effects division to about a billion dollars annually from around $35 million a decade ago, according to Vince Pizzica, a special advisor to the CEO of the France-based company.

Clearly, acquisition of this category of content is key to both the traditional broadcasters and the streamers. And this is where Vuulr’s extensive catalogue makes things easier for acquisition teams to find, negotiate and acquire content in this category.

If you are in an acquisitions team, Vuulr is free to register and use.

If you are a studio producing animation content, we’d love to list your content on Vuulr and put our platform to work for you. It is free to register and list your content — you only pay a small commission when you make a sale.

To find out more go to www.vuulr.com

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