BOCA RATON, Fla., June 21, 2021 -- Grom Social Enterprises, Inc. (NASDAQ: GROM), which recently entered into an agreement to acquire Curiosity Ink Media – a producer of original multiplatform family entertainment – today announced that Curiosity has entered into a creative partnership with Cepia LLC to fortify 2021's biggest cat-tastic collectible craze, Cats vs. Pickles, into an original series, along with ancillary publishing extensions. In the silly and colorful world of Cats vs. Pickles, Cats are afraid of Pickles, but Pickles are misunderstood - they just want to be friends. The Cats vs. Pickles brand has established tremendous appeal among global fans with collectible bean-filled toys, wildly popular YouTube animated shorts, and a hyper-casual app game. The announcement was made jointly by Cepia LLC Founder and Chief Executive Officer, James Russell Hornsby, and Russell Hicks, Curiosity Ink Media's Chief Content Officer.
The partnership represents both companies' foray into the lucrative and highly profitable worlds of content distribution and publishing - offering new revenue streams for both - unlocking the potential for attendant ancillary businesses including international marketing, licensing and additional consumer products. The alliance will develop Cats vs. Pickles into a recurring series in 11-minute installments, as well as create revenue-generating extensions beginning with published content for consumer purchase. Cats vs. Pickles has no dialogue, and therefore no language or cultural barriers, and its potential for immediate global distribution makes it a unique and compelling programming asset. Simultaneously, Curiosity and Cepia will collaborate to produce a collection of picture, board and activity books expected to hit shelves in 2022.
The alliance will tap into the growing popularity of Cats vs. Pickles, the hit toy property and animated shorts that premiered on YouTube and chronicle the love-hate relationship between cats and pickles. The show's premise is simple: cats hate pickles (true fact) and pickles just want to be loved (research has not yet proven definitively) but the humorous conflict demonstrates that it's silly to be afraid of something just because it may be different. In the tradition of the classic cartoon, Tom & Jerry, Cats vs. Pickles employs clever visual storytelling without the use of dialogue. Misunderstood, the dim-witted pickles – Joe Pickle, Hank Pickle and Fitzgherkin to name a few - plot complex but doomed-to-fail schemes to get close to cats while in hopeless pursuit of friendship. The colorful cast of cats -including Paw-Purr-Oni, Water-meow-lon and Galacticat - are too self- absorbed to realize the pickle pursuit until it's too late and react to the pickles with frightening alarm. The result is a hilarious feline-vegetable clash.
"Cats vs. Pickles has the elements of a franchise hit including a simple premise: loveable characters, endless storytelling possibilities and brand extension opportunities," explains Curiosity's Hicks. "Curiosity Ink Media is very excited to partner with the brilliant minds from Cepia to elevate this online sensation from cult hit to global powerhouse at a time when the world could definitely use a laugh, a smile and a message about acceptance."
Cepia's Hornsby added "At its core, Cats vs Pickles is a love story that everyone can relate to because, at some point, we've all been pickles ourselves. We are thrilled to team up with the exceptional storytellers at Curiosity Ink, whose rich biographies in entertainment include cultivating powerhouse franchises like SpongeBob and Dora the Explorer, to expand Cats vs. Pickles into its next nine lives!"
About Cepia LLC
Headquartered in St Louis, Mo., Cepia LLC is a privately held company founded by James Russell Hornsby that manufactures toys and games for children of all ages. Cepia's entertainment property ZhuZhu Pets® was named one of the "All-time 100 Greatest Toys" by TIME, and received top honor Toy of the Year recognition in five countries, including 2010 "Toy of the Year," "Most Innovative Toy" and "Best Girls Toy." By combining kid-friendly technology and innovative creations, the company's fundamental philosophy is to transform simplistic ideas into magical experiences for kids. Ingenuity, creativity, playfulness and passion are the heart of Cepia.
About Curiosity Ink Media
Curiosity Ink Media is a global media company that develops, acquires, builds, grows and maximizes the short, mid & long-term commercial potential of Kids & Family entertainment properties and associated business opportunities. Driven by a best-in-class leadership team, Curiosity Ink Media's multi-faceted I.P. library is designed to amass ongoing value through strategic stewardship, partnerships and highly targeted market entry.
About Grom Social Enterprises, Inc.
Grom Social Enterprises, Inc. is a growing social media platform and original content provider of entertainment for children under 13 years of age, which provides safe and secure digital environments for kids that can be monitored by their parents or guardians. The Company has several operating subsidiaries, including Grom Social, which delivers its content through mobile and desktop environments (web portal and apps) that entertain children, let them interact with friends, access relevant news, and play proprietary games while teaching them about being good digital citizens. The Company owns and operates Top Draw Animation, which produces award-winning animation content for some of the largest international media companies in the world. Grom also includes Grom Educational Services, which has provided web filtering services for K-12 schools, government and private businesses. For more information, please visit.gromsocial.com.