Scholastic to Invest $186M in Animation Studio 9 Story Media

Scholastic Entertainment has unveiled a deal to invest $186 million in the Canadian animation studio 9 Story Media Group.

A definitive agreement between the two companies would see Scholastic — whose Hollywood projects include Sony’s Goosebumps movies and the live-action/animation hybrid adaptation of Clifford the Big Red Dog for Paramount — acquire 100 percent of the economic interests and a minority of voting rights in Toronto-based 9 Story.

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The transaction, already approved by 9 Story shareholders and board members, is expected to close in Scholastic’s fiscal quarter beginning June 1, 2024.

Vince Commisso, president and CEO of 9 Story, said in a statement on Tuesday: “We’ve been fortunate to work with Scholastic for decades, going back to my own start with the family-favorite 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. We’re eager to begin bringing together our complementary talents to enhance Scholastic’s position as a top developer, producer and distributor of kids and family content.”

The long collaboration between Scholastic and 9 Story includes the animated series reboot of Clifford the Big Red Dog on PBS Kids and Amazon Prime Video and Eva the Owlet for Apple TV+.

“We are thrilled to build upon our more than 20-year relationship with 9 Story’s exceptional management team and employees, whose culture and values could not be better aligned with our own,” Peter Warwick, Scholastic president and CEO, said in a statement on Tuesday.

9 Story and its business divisions — 9 Story’s business divisions Brown Bag Films,  9 Story Distribution International and 9 Story Brands — reported revenue of $104 million in its most recent fiscal year to Aug. 31, 2023.

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