SOURCE: Genius Brands International, Inc.

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May 18, 2016 09:00 ET

Genius Brands International Expands Stone Newman's Role as President of Global Consumer Products to Include Worldwide Marketing Efforts for Company's Growing IP Catalog

Newman To Oversee Licensing and Merchandising Programs and Marketing Initiatives for Brands, Including SpacePOP, Llama Llama, Thomas Edison's Secret Lab, Baby Genius, Celessence, Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club and More

BEVERLY HILLS, CA--(Marketwired - May 18, 2016) - Genius Brands International, Inc. ("GBI") (OTCQB: GNUS), a global brand management company dedicated to providing entertaining and enriching content with a purpose for toddlers to tweens, continues to build its global infrastructure with the promotion of industry veteran Stone Newman from President of Global Consumer Products to President of Global Consumer Products & Marketing. The announcement was made today by GBI's Chairman & CEO, Andy Heyward.

Since joining GBI in 2014, Newman has been responsible for overseeing the Company's consumer products programs worldwide, working with retailers and licensees to build comprehensive licensing and merchandising programs for brands, including the all-new tween music-based property SpacePOP, which launches this summer; the timeless classic Llama Llama, which will debut its first animated production in summer 2017; Baby Genius®, Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club, Stan Lee's Mighty 7 (SLAM 7), Thomas Edison's Secret Lab, and others. Additionally, Newman has managed licensing programs under GBI's wholly owned subsidiary, A Squared Entertainment, LLC, which manages properties that fall outside of GBI's core mission of developing and delivering 'content with a purpose,' including From Frank and Celessence Technologies.

In addition to overseeing consumer products for GBI and A Squared Entertainment and their team of leading licensing agencies around the world, Newman will now spearhead traditional and digital marketing efforts for all of the Company's brands. Lloyd Mintz, Vice President of Consumer Products and Jason Brumbaugh, Vice President of Digital report into Newman.

"Stone has been instrumental in driving the growth of our brands and as a result, we have become a significant player in the kid's media market, even securing a spot in License Global's Top 150 Licensors list this year," said Heyward. "Stone is a force of nature who understands the business inside and out and is extremely passionate about his work, and he will no doubt be just as innovative and enthusiastic in spearheading our marketing initiatives. It is with pleasure that we announce this well deserved promotion."

"I am extremely proud of what we have all at Genius Brands accomplished in less than two years, and we are just getting started," comments Newman. "This year will be hugely important in the growth of the company with our new Sony Music and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment partnerships driving distribution and our brands, such as SpacePOP, launching into the market with entertainment content and a retail program. Plus we are continuing to develop new brands for worldwide distribution."

Newman joined Genius Brands International in 2014 from Art + Science International, Inc., a boutique licensing agency he founded. Representing numerous technology companies, fine artists, fashion and character brands, including Psycho Bunny, From Frank, Celessence, Puff the Magic Dragon and ElectroKidz, Newman provided guidance and facilitation of business planning, equity raising, licensing, marketing and product development, as well as retail initiatives. Among the firm's many achievements was the branded licensing program for Celessence Technologies, which Newman led from obscurity to more than $50MM in retail sales through 20 licensees in just three years. The company also represented The Alex Beard Studio, Callaway Arts & Entertainment, Giftventure Studios, and MarVista Entertainment, handling the licensing and retail relationship for its hit Disney film release, 16 Wishes.

Newman, an accomplished entrepreneur, also founded and built Sababa Toys from a start-up into a $30MM toy and game manufacturer with product presence in more than 50,000 retail stores. He also worked in marketing and licensing at Hasbro Toys.

About Genius Brands International
Headquartered in Beverly Hills, California, Genius Brands International, Inc. "GBI" (OTCQB: GNUS) is a publicly traded global brand management company that creates and licenses multimedia content for toddlers to tweens. Led by award-winning creators and producers, GBI creates "content and products with a purpose," providing enrichment as well as entertainment. The Company distributes its content worldwide in all formats, as well as a broad range of consumer products based on its characters. GBI's portfolio includes award-winning Baby Genius, re-launched with new entertainment and over 40 new products; adventure comedy Thomas Edison's Secret Lab®, available on Netflix, public broadcast stations and GBI's Kid Genius channel on Comcast's Xfinity on Demand reaching 21 million households; animated movie Stan Lee's Mighty 7, the first project from Stan Lee Comics, a joint venture with Stan Lee's POW! Entertainment and featuring an all-star voice cast led by legendary Stan Lee; and Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club, created with and starring iconic investor Warren Buffett. The Company is also producing a new animated preschool series based on Llama Llama, the NY Times bestselling children's book franchise; and the music-driven, tween adventure series SpacePOP

GBI's wholly owned subsidiary A Squared Entertainment is a brand management and licensing company that represents third-party properties across a broad range of categories in territories around the world. The company currently represents From Frank, a humor greeting card and product line, and Celessence Technologies, the world's leading microencapsulation company.

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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.

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