May 1, 2009
Hasbro, Discovery plan new kids’ channel
U.S. game maker Hasbro says it has teamed with the Discovery Channel to produce a new cable channel aimed at children 14 and younger.
Hasbro, which makes such games and toys as Trivial Pursuit, Scrabble, G.I. Joe and Transformers, will put up $300 million to own a 50 percent stake in the new Discovery Kids Network, which will be a rebranded version of Discovery Communications Inc.'s current Discovery Kids channel, the Los Angeles Times reported.
TV is the next step for us to relaunch and reinvent our brands, Hasbro Chief Executive Brian Goldner said in a statement, making clear that merchandising will play a significant role in the news channel.
The merchandising plan has brought protests from the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood. The campaign's director, Susan Linn, told the Times,
This partnership represents a new low in children's television, a network devoted to showing infomercials for Hasbro's toys and games.