SOURCE: Genius Brands International, Inc.

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April 28, 2016 09:00 ET

Genius Brands International's New Tween Girl's Brand SpacePOP Continues to Attract New Licensing Partners With Multiple Deals Signed

Taste Beauty, Bare Tree Media, Canal Toys and Yowie Group, Ltd. Join Growing Roster of Global Licensing Partners

BEVERLY HILLS, CA--(Marketwired - April 28, 2016) - Genius Brands International, Inc. ("GBI") (OTCQB: GNUS), the global brand management company dedicated to providing entertaining and enriching 'content with a purpose' for toddlers to tweens, has signed multiple new licensing partners for its new music and fashion-driven brand for tween girls, SpacePOP, featuring original theme music produced by Ron and Stefanie Fair; original character designs created by Han Lee; and stories developed by head writer Steve Banks.

Taste Beauty, Bare Tree Media, Canal Toys and Yowie Group, Ltd. are the latest partners on board to debut merchandise based on GBI's innovative new brand, joining current partners Jaya Apparel (apparel), H.E.R. Accessories (accessories), Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (home entertainment), and Imprint (publishing), part of Macmillan Children's Publishing Group, who will launch a book series, kicking off with the first title, Not Your Average Princesses, an original middle grade novel with graphic novel inserts written by author Erin Downing and illustrated by Jen Bartel. 

"The industry's reaction to SpacePOP has been and continues to be awesome, validating that our creation and development of this empowering entertainment property for tween girls resonates with licensees across the board and around the globe," said Stone Newman, GBI's President of Global Consumer Products. "Our new licensing partners are bringing the same sense of fun, fashion and music that permeates the brand into their product concepts, which is really going to ignite the fan base for SpacePOP."

Taste Beauty will create a line of branded beauty products for tween girls based on the SpacePOP princess characters, including lip balm, lip gloss, nail polish, nail accessories, bath and body products (body washes, body lotion, bubble bath), as well as specialty gift sets containing various combinations of any or all of these products.

"We are excited to partner with SpacePOP on a collection of fun and innovative cosmetics targeted towards the brands' core audience," said Taste Beauty's Alex Fogelson, Managing Partner. "The content Genius Brands has developed for SpacePOP is very exciting, and we believe the distribution on digital platforms will drive affinity for the brand among tweens and teens nationwide."

Bare Tree Media, the creator and digital publisher of virtual branded goods within mobile and social platforms, is crafting a treasure of emoticons -- fun and engaging images based on the SpacePOP characters -- as well as digital photo stickers, mobile phone themes, web-enabled TV themes and more, which can be inserted in mobile messaging, social posts, and photos.

"Consumers, especially young girls, are connecting more frequently through their smartphones and tablets to add some fun, customization and personality to their digital communications," explained Robert Ferrari , CEO, Bare Tree Media. "Not only do our products appeal to the girls engaging with the SpacePOP brand, they also drive brand awareness through social messaging, creating even stronger connections between the fans and the content they love."

Canal Toys, a top global toy manufacturer and distributor, will be devising craft and activity kits based on the SpacePOP characters and storylines. 

"We're energized by the distinct personalities and individual styles of the SpacePOP princesses, each of which opens the door to a variety of potential craft and activity kits," declared Bill Uzell, President and CEO of Canal Toys, USA, Ltd. "It's a dynamic brand that branches out into a multitude of possibilities, all of which is very appealing when it comes to long term licensing programs."

There will also be a line of SPACEPOP confections -- chocolate versions of the SpacePOP princesses as well as the evil Empress -- thanks to a licensing agreement with Yowie Group Ltd., the Australian confectionery and publishing brand.

"The SpacePOP princesses have distinguishable, individual personalities and traits, which is what we look for when developing delectable chocolate versions of fans' favorite characters," said Patricia Fields, Director of Yowie Group Ltd. "It's fun to transform those characters into confectionery and even more fun to consume them!" 

About SpacePOP:
SpacePOP targets tween girls, age 8-12, offering a colorful blend of music, fashion, beauty, friendship and intergalactic adventures resulting in an engaging lifestyle brand. 

GBI Chairman & CEO, Andy Heyward, an Emmy Award-winning children's content producer responsible for over 5,000 episodes of children's entertainment (Inspector Gadget, Strawberry Shortcake, Super Mario Bros, Sabrina the Teenage Witch) spearheads production efforts; Emmy Award-nominated Steve Banks, head writer and story editor of Sponge Bob Square Pants serves as content writer; and original character designs created by Han Lee (Pink FizzBobby Jack). A best-in class-team has been assembled to deliver original music, including producer of multiple Grammy Award winners and music veteran Ron Fair (Fergie, Mary J. Blige, Black Eyed Peas, Pussycat Dolls, Christina Aguilera and more) and singer songwriter spouse Stefanie Fair, a founding member of RCA's girl group Wild Orchid with Fergie, who created the theme music and original songs by veteran music producer and composer John Loeffler (Kidz Bop, Pokemon). 

Currently in production on 100+ serialized, music-driven animated videos (3-4 minutes in length), SpacePOP will be digitally distributed via the SpacePOP channel on YouTube and other digital platforms, capitalizing on today's media consumption habits of tweens and teens. The first six videos will debut this summer with two new videos released weekly thereafter. The music will be woven through a narrative story detailing how when the evil Empress Geela takes over the Planets of The Pentangle ridding the galaxy of Music, Fashion and Beauty, five teenage princesses disguise themselves as musicians and form a band called SpacePOP. Their mission: Spread the message of freedom and joy through music and join the rebel resistance force to vanquish Geela, who has taken over their home planets and enslaved the inhabitants. 

The launch of the SpacePOP brand will be supported by GBI's music-based apps, web series, linear TV exposure, potential live tour, and licensing and merchandising program with top tier partners set to launch new SpacePOP branded products at retail nationwide in fall 2016.

About Taste Beauty
Headquartered in NYC, Taste Beauty is a manufacturer and marketer of the highest quality scented and flavored cosmetics, distributed throughout all retail channels. For additional information please visit www.taste-beauty.com.

About Bare Tree Media
Bare Tree Media drives engagement between popular brands, and their community of fans, through the creation and distribution of high quality interactive entertainment offerings on mobile and online platforms. The company leverages its deep knowledge and network in brand management, licensing, app development and entertainment to partner with marquee brands including Care Bears, CBS Television, Domo, Garfield, Hello Kitty, Paramount Pictures, Paul Frank, Power Rangers, Strawberry Shortcake, 20th Century Fox, and more. Bare Tree Media builds fun, engaging and accessible applications that let consumers interact with their favorite branded characters, TV and film, sports, music related content. In close partnership with these brands the company compliments the existing access to millions of fans to maximize reach and availability of its offerings beyond mainstream online distribution to reach over 3 billion users boosting brand engagement and creating new revenue opportunities. The company also offers brands its emojiTap mobile marketing platform as an integrated platform for mobile apps. For more information, visit http://baretreemedia.com and http://emojitap.com

About Canal Toys ®
Founded in 1996, Canal Toys is one of the world's top toy manufacturers and distributors of proprietary and licensed products. The company operates in more than 40 countries worldwide, is the number one toy company in France, and in 2014, added a Canal Toys USA division. Canal Toys provides high quality products designed to open children's creative minds, in the categories of: beads and jewelry, craft kits, creative beauty art, dough, easels and desks and stationery. Key Canal Toys licensed brands include Barbie®, My Little Pony, Hello Kitty®, Power Rangers and more. For more information, visit: www.canaltoys.fr.

About Yowie Group Ltd.
Yowie Group Ltd is an Australia-based brand licensing company. The Company's brand includes Yowie. The Company owns intellectual property rights and uses these rights to supply Yowie branded chocolate confectionery product, a digital platform and Yowie branded licensed consumer products. The Company's Yowie brand includes collection of replicas of wild animals. Yowie characters include Rumble, Boof, Crag, Ditty, Nap and Squish, their animal friends and their Grumkin adversaries. The Company's Yowie confectionery is a character-molded, approximately 28 grams chocolate inclusion product. The Yowie chocolate is foil wrapped with one of six Yowie character. The Yowie chocolate encloses a Yowie character-shaped capsule with a natural replica creature, or Yowie playmate, inside. The Company operates in the United States, Australia and Hong Kong.

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. 

For additional information please visit www.gnusbrands.com

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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Contact Information

  • GBI MEDIA CONTACT:
    Michelle Orsi/Carol Holdsworth 
    Three.Sixty Marketing & Communications
    310-418-6430
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    FOR INVESTOR RELATIONS:

    Michael Porter
    PLR Investor Relations
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