Marketing Featured South Asia

Cartoon Network launches #TomAndJerryBdayBash to commemorate 82 years of non-stop wonder

Mumbai, India — Since its inception in 1940, the furry duo of Tom and Jerry has captivated fans all around the globe with its immersive and unforgettable storylines. Most of the children who grew up watching their adventures and antics have a special place in their hearts for the tandem. To rekindle those memories, Cartoon Network, a WarnerMedia Kids channel, launched a social media campaign to celebrate the 82nd birthday of Tom and Jerry in India.

The campaign was done in collaboration with Cartoon Network’s recently appointed social media marketing agency Chimp&z Inc, an alliance of Merge Infinity Global. The show’s birthday celebration was executed for brand and franchise amplification across social media platforms Facebook and Instagram with multiple social media activations to engage with fans across the country.

Tom and Jerry’s birthday campaign included a mix of brand collaborations and UGC-led content to organically increase the overall digital footprint of Cartoon Network. The campaign was divided into three segments: pre-birthday, birthday, and after-party.

The first segment, the pre-birthday activity ‘I see Tom and Jerry’, was a series of 3 stories where users were asked to share pictures of anything that reminded them of Tom and Jerry using the ‘Add Yours’ feature on Instagram Stories.

For the birthday, on 10 Feb, multiple brands from various sectors namely Parle G, Tata Play, Vinod Cookware, MuscleXP, Man Arden, Curious Cat Company, Feline Club of India, Portronics India, Yellophant, and many more joined the celebration with the 2nd part, ‘#LetItSlide’, where they uploaded unfortunate mishaps they would let slide just to wish the duo a happy birthday.

The campaign ended with an after-party themedTom and Jerry Get The Cherry where users were given the opportunity to decorate Tom and Jerry’s home with a single tap on their mobile screen. The story would display Tom and Jerry’s room with text and decorative items.

According to Chimp&z Inc, the campaign has garnered a total of 2,14,100+ reach and 2,25,400+ impressions leading to an increase in Cartoon Network India’s Instagram follower base by 3000+ within a week. The official handle of Cartoon Network on Instagram posted a wrap-up Reel to showcase how the celebrations unfurled.

Last January, Cartoon Network has unveiled its latest brand experience called ‘Redraw Your World’ for its APAC market.

Marketing Featured APAC

WarnerMedia bolsters content, production teams for Asia with new senior hires

Singapore – Global mass media and entertainment giant, WarnerMedia, has appointed three new senior content hires in Asia, in an aim to scale up its original productions teams in advance of the launch of HBO Max in the region.

For the Singapore team, Mark Francis, former head of content for OTT at TV and radio operator Astro, will be WarnerMedia’s new group lead of production and development, both scripted and unscripted. He will lead a regional team to develop Asian original productions under the ‘Max Originals’ banner. 

Meanwhile, Shi Ming Wee, former assistant vice president of regional content and productions at streaming media platform Viu, has been named the new head of entertainment content acquisition for North Asia content. She will now be working alongside Katheryn Lim, who leads content acquisition for international and English-language entertainment titles. They will both report to Magdalene Ew, WarnerMedia’s head of content – entertainment for SEA, Taiwan, and Hong Kong.

For Mumbai, Saugata Mukherjee, former head of content for SONY LIV at Sony Pictures Networks India, will be joining WarnerMedia as the new head of content – entertainment for India. He will now be responsible for commissioning local originals, as well as acquiring and developing Indian content across all general entertainment genres. The newly-created role, like Ew, reports to Clement Schwebig, WarnerMedia’s managing director for India, SEA, and Korea.

Schwebig believes that these roles are vital as WarnerMedia looks to ramp up its original content and programming ambitions in the Asia region. 

“Saugata, Mark and Shi Ming have a great eye for a winning project and have enviable connections within the industry. With them all now in place over the past few months, we’re looking in great shape to entertain local audiences with a well-rounded and premium slate,” said Schwebig.

Marketing Featured APAC

WarnerMedia opens new regional hub in Singapore

Singapore – The global mass media and entertainment giant, WarnerMedia, has announced the opening of its new regional hub for Asia in Singapore, which is dedicated for markets in Asia except China and Japan. 

WarnerMedia’s new hub, which was officially opened on September 24, 2021 by Singapore’s Minister for Communications and Information (MCI) Josephine Teo, signals the full integration of its businesses in the region that includes Warner Bros., HBO, and Turner brands. It also houses the new streaming platform HBO Max, which is expected to launch in its first Asian markets in the future.

The new office is a sprawling 40,000 sq ft across two floors at Solaris in Fusionopolis, the city state’s media and tech business park. The modern space was designed by Singapore firm ID21 and incorporates a post-COVID and flexible work environment inspired by an ‘Activity Based Work’ strategy.

Clement Schwebig, WarnerMedia’s managing director for India, Southeast Asia, and Korea, believes that the new flagship office is more than just a new workspace, as it brings together the most incredible parts of their diverse business – from Harry Potter’s Wizarding World to Looney Tunes, Game of Thrones and Wonder Woman – under one roof for the first time.

“Here in Singapore, we have long supported a sizable ecosystem for the entertainment, broadcast, production, and licensing industries. From our new Singapore hub, we will continue with our ambitious plans for the region,” said Schwebig.

Moreover, WarnerMedia expects to substantially increase additional roles in Singapore in the coming years, including those in the technology field as the company increases focus on its direct-to-consumer streaming business led by Amit Malhotra, the managing director of HBO Max for Southeast Asia, India, and Korea.

“As we get ready to launch HBO Max in our first Asian markets, we’ll build on WarnerMedia’s legacy of incredible stories and introduce a brand-new streaming experience for our fans in the region. Our new office space in Singapore as a regional HQ will be the perfect backdrop for the innovative work to be done in the lead-up to our launch,” said Malhotra.

Meanwhile, on a tour of the office, Minister Teo also met with young Singaporean employees, who discussed their early experiences in the media industry. Joining her on the tour was Lew Chuen Hong, the CEO of Infocomm Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA).

Hong commented, “We are excited that Singapore is home to WarnerMedia’s new Asian Hub. There is tremendous potential in this region, and the new Hub signals the central role that Singapore plays in WarnerMedia’s expansion plans.”

Platforms Featured Global

Sony’s Funimation completes Crunchyroll acquisition from AT&T for US$1.175b

Texas, USA – After its initial announcement last December 2020, Sony Pictures’ anime distribution service Funimation has completed the acquisition of fellow anime streaming service Crunchyroll from global telco network AT&T for a disclosed amount of US$1.175b.

The acquisition by Funimation entails acquiring Crunchyroll’s 5 million SVOD users, 120 million registered users, as well as global market presence in 200 countries and territories, offering AVOD, mobile games, manga, events merchandise and distribution.

Said deal provides as well the opportunity for Crunchyroll and Funimation to broaden distribution for their content partners and expand fan-centric offerings for consumers.

Kenichiro Yoshida, chairman, resident and CEO at Sony Group Corporation expressed excitement with the recent acquisition, noting that anime, or Japanese animation series and movies, is a rapidly growing medium that enthralls and inspires emotion among audiences around the globe.

“The alignment of Crunchyroll and Funimation will enable us to get even closer to the creators and fans who are the heart of the anime community. We look forward to delivering even more outstanding entertainment that fills the world with emotion through anime,” Yoshida stated.

Meanwhile, Tony Vinciquerra, chairman and CEO at Sony Pictures Entertainment, commented that Crunchyroll adds tremendous value to Sony’s existing anime businesses, including Funimation, as well as their partners at anime distribution company Aniplex and Sony Music Entertainment Japan.

He added that with the acquisition, the combined company forces will be committed to creating the ultimate anime experience for fans and presenting a unique opportunity for their key partners, publishers, and the immensely talented creators to continue to deliver masterful content to audiences around the world.

“With the addition of Crunchyroll, we have an unprecedented opportunity to serve anime fans like never before and deliver the anime experience across any platform they choose, from theatrical, events, home entertainment, games, streaming, linear TV — everywhere and every way fans want to experience their anime. Our goal is to create a unified anime subscription experience as soon as possible,” Vinciquerra stated.

Crunchyroll is part of AT&T’s segment from global media company WarnerMedia.

During the acquisition announcement last December 2020, Tony Goncalves, chief revenue officer at WarnerMedia, said, “By combining with Funimation, they will continue to nurture a global community and bring more anime to more people. I’m incredibly proud of the Crunchyroll team and what they have been able to accomplish in the digital media space in such a short period of time. They’ve created an end-to-end global ecosystem for this incredible art form,” 

Vinciquerra added, “Together with Crunchyroll, we will create the best possible experience for fans and greater opportunity for creators, producers and publishers in Japan and elsewhere. Funimation has been doing this for over 25 years and we look forward to continuing to leverage the power of creativity and technology to succeed in this rapidly growing segment of entertainment.”