US publisher Scholastic has agreed to acquire Canada-based kids TV producer and distributor 9 Story Media Group for $186m.

Scholastic said the deal would expand its opportunities to leverage its brand and children’s publishing franchises across print, screens and merchandising.

3. Scholastic. Eva The Owlet.0802

Eva the Owlet

The two companies have previously collaborated on the animated series reboot of Clifford the Big Red Dog on PBS Kids and Amazon Prime Video and the production of Eva the Owlet on Apple TV+.

9 Story’s divisions include Brown Bag Films, which is behind kids’ series such as Octonauts, Doc McStuffins and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood; 9 Story Distribution International, which represents more than 5,000 half-hour episodes of 2D and 3D animated and live-action programming; and consumer products arm 9 Story Brands.

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9 Story recently announced a significant deal with Crayola Studios to handle production and distribution on new, original projects.

“This highly strategic combination, adding 9 Story’s industry-leading capabilities with Scholastic’s trusted brand and proven ability to create iconic children’s series and franchises, has tremendous potential to build deeper connections with young people through our stories, as the pages of our books come to life on screens and through merchandising,” said Peter Warwick, Scholastic President and Chief Executive Officer.

Vince Commisso, President and Chief Executive Officer of 9 Story, said: “We’ve been fortunate to work with Scholastic for decades, going back to my own start with the family-favourite production, The Magic School Bus. The combination of our global studios, sales and distribution capabilities with Scholastic’s existing media business, iconic name and unique capabilities opens even more opportunities to deliver compelling stories and build impactful brands for audiences worldwide.”

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