Television Business International

Virgin takes slice of Cake kids content

Kids-headerAngry Birds BlueVirgin has consolidated launching a dedicated kids TV app by acquiring nearly 500 episodes of programming from UK-based distributor Cake.

The deal hands UK and Ireland pay TV provider Virgin shows such as the upcoming Angry Birds cartoons (Angry Birds Blue and Piggy Tales: 4th Street), Total Drama, Wanda and the Alien and The Sparticle Mystery.

They will appear on the Virgin TV Kids on-demand service and a new kids-branded app, which launched on August 24.

“Kids TV is a clear target for us and it is great to have Cake as a key partner,” said Virgin’s chief digital entertainment officer, David Bouchier.

This comes after Virgin’s kids and music editor, Sarah Aspinall, first revealed plans for the app at the Children’s Media Conference in Sheffield in July.

During that interview, which TBI conducted, Aspinall also relayed the news Liberty Global-owned Virgin was getting into kids TV commissioning for the first time, with resulting shows first appearing on the authenticated app and on Virgin TV Kids.

Aspinall joined Virgin last year to spearhead a push into kids TV, and has since acquired thousands of episodes for the VOD service and app.

In July, Virgin said a deal with Canada’s DHX Media comprising a total of 615 hours was its “largest deal to date”. DHX today hired Corus Entertainment’s Jerry Diaz to bolster its distribution unit.