European kids and family production house Amuse Animation has set up shop in China with a new office helmed by distribution, co-production, and licensing veteran Entin Liu.
The Chinese outfit will be Amuse’s third international base; the company also has offices in Paris and the Canary Islands. The company produces numerous popular digital kids’ programs including Shark Academy, AnimaCars, Plum the Super Witch, and Increditales.
Amuse has a strong relationship with several Chinese companies including Tencent, QIY, and Youku, and was awarded best cooperation partner and best content creator at the Tencent Video Digital Content Creators Summit in 2021.
In her new role, Liu will report to Amuse’s recently appointed chief revenue officer Jiella Esmat, who is based in London. Esmat previously served as the senior director of distribution and content partnerships at Moonbug.
In a release, Esmat explained: “China is an instrumental part of our expansion plan as we prepare to scale the company outside of Youtube and move into full 360 IP exploitation. We’re building on our existing success in this uniquely dynamic market and are looking forward to brokering co-productions and long-term animation alliances between our partners in the East and the West.”
Before joining Amuse, Liu was a regional distributor for companies including Fifth Season, Nickelodeon/Viacom, Regency, and Paramount. She also facilitated co-productions at Fox, Insight TV, and Tencent, and worked in licensing at Aniplex, DeAPlaneta Kids & Family, and ADK. At Fox Networks Group, she served as director of international distribution and licensing.
In a release, Liu said: “Having a presence in the region will help bring more opportunities to the company while continuing to deliver a steady stream of great preschool content to our partners and future clients.”
Cartoon Brew’s View: Amuse has found significant success in the digital streaming space, but it’s clear from recent hires and Esmat’s comments that the company is planning to make its IP available on other platforms as well. Esmat seems like the right person to lead that charge, having come from Cocomelon rightsholder Moonbug, which has set the bar in finding ways to grow and exploit digital IPs.
Pictured at top: Plum the Super Witch