New Company Will Team Kids Industry Veterans Andy & Amy Heyward with Visual Computing Labs (a division of Tata Elxsi)- Asia’s Premier Animation & Visual Effects Studio, part of India’s Largest Conglomerate, Tata Group
USC’s School of Cinematic Arts Dean, Elizabeth Daley, to Join Newly Formed A2E2 Board
(December 8, 2011— Los Angeles, CA) — Today A Squared Entertainment (A2), an international kids’ entertainment company, and Tata Elxsi, the technology arm of the multi-billion USD Tata Group, India’s largest and most respected business conglomerate, announce the formation of A Squared Elxsi Entertainment LLC (A2E2), a joint venture pursuant to a memo of understanding entered into in January, in India. Together, they will create, develop and distribute original brands, including animated entertainment, digital gaming and originally designed consumer products.
“Combining A2’s creative development, brand management and multi-media distribution expertise with Tata’s exceptional animation capabilities and technological innovation gives us a tremendous advantage in today’s competitive kids’ marketplace,” said kids’ entertainment veteran, Andy Heyward, Co-President, A2. “Not to mention the powerful stable of brands that are already in production with personalities ranging from Warren Buffett to Martha Stewart, Gisele BÃ¼ndchen and Stan Lee.”
“This new partnership will enable us to expand our commitment to producing and distributing quality entertainment for kids in all formats throughout the world,” said A2 Co-President Amy Heyward. “Kids today consume entertainment in so many different ways, and we are excited to be equipped to serve their ever changing interests.”
“We are very pleased to collaborate with Andy and Amy Heyward. This venture will combine the best of creative and marketing skills from Hollywood and the animation production experience and scale of Visual Computing Labs of Tata Elxsi to create meaningful and purposeful content of which we can all be proud of,” said Tata Elxsi’s Visual Computing Lab Chief Operating Officer S Nagarajan.
Tata Elxsi’s Visual Computing Lab (VCL) is a leading animation, visual effects and game development studio based in India, with a studio in Santa Monica, CA. Considered among the premier creative houses in Asia, VCL has executed projects for leading Indian and global entertainment and media organisations. Recognized for their work by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, VCL has earned numerous industry awards, including a nomination at the prestigious Visual Effects Society Award for outstanding Animation in an Animated Motion Picture. Recent productions include films: Roadside Romeo (co-produced by Disney and Yash Raj Films), TV commercials for Coke, Reebok, Wrigley; among many others.
Tata Elxsi’s Embedded Product Design (EPD) provides full service software, hardware, system design and development programs for a variety of technology products including gaming, multi-media and high-performance computing.
The Industrial Design (ID) division of Tata Elxsi provides end-to-end brand and product development services, including consumer electronics and digital user experiences.
This technological innovation and expertise will be combined with A2’s brand development, creative entertainment, global distribution and consumer retail products expertise to create and develop new entertainment experiences for kids in an entirely new way.
The new venture’s daily operations will be managed by Co-Presidents Andy and Amy Heyward from the Los Angeles office. The partnership was orchestrated by Indian-born tennis superstar, international sports commentator and consultant Vijay Amritraj who introduced the parties and will remain on in an advisory role.
Also serving an advisory role for the new venture is University of Southern California’s (USC) School of Cinematic Arts Dean, Elizabeth Daley. Daley joins the newly formed A2E2 Board, bringing her invaluable experience including her role as the founding executive director of the USC Annenberg Center for Communication (1994-2005) and the executive director of the USC Institute for Multimedia Literacy.