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Genius Brands International Launches Globally Its Original Preschool Series, Rainbow Rangers, With the Appointment of International Content Distribution and Licensing Agents

Debut of Rainbow Rangers Retail Program in 2019 follows U.S. Launch in Fall 2018 in the U.S. on Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr.

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., Feb. 20, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Genius Brands International, “Genius Brands” (Nasdaq:GNUS), a global brand management company that creates and licenses multimedia entertainment content for children, prepares for the global debut of its all-new preschool series with the appointment of two international brand agents.  Centa IP will handle content distribution and licensing for Rainbow Rangers throughout Australia and New Zealand, and Alicom will represent the brand’s licensing business in Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway and Iceland.

Genius Brands International (NASDAQ: GNUS) to Launch Globally Its New Animated Preschool Series
Boasting a unique and highly-accomplished team of creators from the animated motion picture world, Rainbow Rangers' creative development and production team includes Rob Minkoff (Disney's The Lion King director), Shane Morris (Disney's Frozen co-writer), Tim Mansfield and New York Times Bestselling author, and Emmy Award-nominated writer Elise Allen (Dinosaur Train, Lion Guard, Barbie specials) who is serving as head writer and co-creator. Genius Brands' Chairman and CEO and multiple Emmy-winning producer of more than 5,000 episodes of children's programming Andy Heyward serves as executive producer, with legendary Disney alum, Ruben Aquino creating key designs. Aquino is responsible for the design and animation of many of Disney's most iconic characters from award-winning films including "The Lion King," "Beauty and the Beast," "The Little Mermaid," "Mulan" and "Frozen."


Genius Brands’ SVP of Global Content Distribution and Marketing & President of Kid Genius Cartoon Channel Deb Pierson stated: “We are excited to bring Centa IP on board to handle our content sales for Rainbow Rangers throughout Australia and New Zealand as we continue to build our global network of top-tier partners across content sales, licensing, merchandising, retail and promotions to bring our unique, girl-empowered action-adventure series to preschool audiences around the globe.”

/EIN News/ -- “Our licensing and merchandising program in the U.S. for Rainbow Rangers is developing with an all-star line-up of partners, and we anticipate Alicom and Centa IP to join forces with licensing and retail partners in their respective territories that fully share our vision for this special brand,” comments Lloyd Mintz, SVP, Global Licensing, Genius Brands. 

“With the powerhouse of creative talent behind the creation of Rainbow Rangers, and the inventiveness that Genius Brands has clearly demonstrated in the development of the brand, we knew we had to be a part of it,” said Gail Mitchell, VP, Centa IP Asia-Pacific. “We look forward to partnering with best-in-class licensees and retailers throughout Australia and New Zealand to introduce young fans to the magical, colorful world of the Rangers.”

Rainbow Rangers is one of the most highly anticipated preschool properties we have come across in a long while, and we are so excited to share in the tremendous opportunity to create new branded product lines for retail that reflect the Rainbow Rangers universe of adventure, friendship and empowerment,” added Roland Lindholm, CEO & Co-Founder, Alicom.

Currently in production on season one (52 x 11’ episodes), the CGI-animated series, Rainbow Rangers, follows the thrilling rescue-based adventures of seven 9-year-old girls who are Earth’s first responders – protecting people, animals, resources, and the natural beauty of our world.  The series is slated to premiere in fall 2018 on the #1 rated kids’ network, Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr. 

Genius Brands is also preparing for the U.S. launch of the retail program to follow the series premiere, which will begin rolling out in the U.S. in late spring 2019, continuing through back-to-school and holiday, and then into the international markets. The program is led by global master toy partner Mattel, Inc., and global master publisher Imprint, a part of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group.  Additional key licensees include Global Brand Group’s American Marketing Enterprises (sleepwear), GBG Socks dba Planet Sox (socks and legwear), Dynacraft (bikes, trikes, scooters and wagons), Kiddieland (foot-to-floor ride-on toys), Kittrich/Inkology (floor décor, stationary and school supplies), Kid Galaxy (bubble toys), Bentex (master apparel), Handcraft MFG (packaged underwear), Jay Franco Mfg. (bedding and bath), Global Design Concepts (bags, backpacks), H.E.R. Accessories (hair and jewelry accessories), and Taste Beauty (health and beauty products).

The Rainbow Rangers, Earth’s first responders, live in the magical land of Kaleidoscopia at the other side of the rainbow and have their own distinct personalities and superpowers. Whenever there’s trouble for the people or animals of Earth, our seven heroines zoom into action and ride their Spectra scooters across the rainbow to save the day. We’ll join them on exciting adventures, but also see them at home having the same daily dramas and hilarities as every preschooler watching the show. And at its heart, Rainbow Rangers is about empowering and encouraging girls to take action and make a difference in their own homes and neighborhoods to improve and safeguard the planet. Every girl viewer will see themselves in at least one of these strong, unique and empowered Rangers!

Boasting a unique and highly-accomplished team of creators from the animated motion picture world, Rainbow Rangers’ creative development and production team includes Rob Minkoff (Disney’s The Lion King director), Shane Morris (Disney’s Frozen co-writer), Tim Mansfield and New York Times Bestselling author, and Emmy Award-nominated writer Elise Allen (Dinosaur Train, Lion Guard, Barbie specials) who is serving as head writer and co-creator. Genius Brands’ Chairman and CEO and multiple Emmy-winning producer of more than 5,000 episodes of children's programming Andy Heyward serves as executive producer, with legendary Disney alum, Ruben Aquino creating key designs. Aquino is responsible for the design and animation of many of Disney’s most iconic characters from award-winning films including “The Lion King,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Mulan” and “Frozen.”   

About Genius Brands International
Headquartered in Beverly Hills, California, Genius Brands International, Inc. (NASDAQ:GNUS) is a leading global media company developing, producing, marketing and licensing branded children’s entertainment properties and consumer products for media distribution and retail channels. Led by award-winning creators and producers, Genius Brands distributes its content worldwide in all formats, as well as a broad range of consumer products based on its characters. In the children's media sector, its portfolio of “content with a purpose” includes new preschool properties Rainbow Rangers for Nick Jr. and Llama Llama for Netflix; tween music-driven YouTube brand SpacePOP; award-winning toddler brand Baby Genius; adventure comedy series Thomas Edison's Secret Lab, and Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club, created with and starring iconic investor Warren Buffett. The Company is also co-producing an all-new adult animated series, Stan Lee's Cosmic Crusaders, with Stan Lee's Pow! Entertainment and The Hollywood Reporter. Genius Brands’ Kid Genius Cartoon Channel is currently available in approximately 60 million households. For additional information please visit www.gnusbrands.com.

About Centa IP:
Centa IP is a premier global licensing company representing new and exciting children's entertainment properties and a portfolio of design, lifestyle and luxury properties. Centa IP delivers innovative, world-class merchandising solutions, with high profile children’s entertainment properties that include Rainbow Rangers, Bush Baby World, Kazoops!, Monster Teddies, Nate Is Late, Zafari and more, as well as clients that include illustrators specializing in textile and fabric design such as Florence Broadhurst. Centa IP provides industry expertise that includes localized broadcast sales, retail sales/merchandising, franchise planning, marketing, product development, new media activation, analytics and licensing.

About Alicom:
Alicom Licensing represent leading entertainment characters, brands and icons, giving full focus and dedication to the Nordic region (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden). Our shared values and practices are: Passion. We are a young, innovative and hungry team open to exploring new ideas and ways of thinking. We are committed to offering excellent service to our clients that drive sales and move the business forward. We have an open mind and love what we do. Focus - We deliver. We give our carefully selected group of clients in all segments of the IP industry full focus in the Nordic region. We strive to service our customers in an efficient, easy; and customer friendly way through the whole process from the initial idea to finished product at retail, giving that little extra. Experience - We are one of the most diversified licensing agencies in the Scandinavian market. We offer a breadth and diversity with extensive knowledge of the media and entertainment industry, as well as a long term trustworthy commitment.

Forward Looking Statements:
Certain statements in this press release constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Words such as "may," "might," "will," "should," "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "continue," "predict," "forecast," "project," "plan," "intend" or similar expressions, or statements regarding intent, belief, or current expectations, are forward-looking statements. While the Company believes these forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on any such forward-looking statements, which are based on information available to us on the date of this release. These forward looking statements are based upon current estimates and assumptions and are subject to various risks and uncertainties, including without limitation those set forth in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"), not limited to Risk Factors relating to its patent business contained therein. Thus, actual results could be materially different. The Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or alter statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

GBI MEDIA CONTACT:
Michelle Orsi/Carol Holdsworth                                   
Three.Sixty Marketing & Communications
                 
310-418-6430
michelle@360-comm.com       

FOR INVESTOR RELATIONS:
Michael Porter
PLR Investor Relations
212.564.4700
mike@plrinvest.com

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/46c902e8-6055-40a2-84b5-61410e707701

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