The ZooMoo channel was launched in Asia today on Starhub in Singapore. ZooMoo is the world’s only children’s channel that is fully dedicated to animals. The channel was launched together with a fully synchronized second screen application that allows ZooMoo channel viewers to automatically collect every animal they encounter on the TV screen and bring them to life on their tablet or smart phone.
The ZooMoo Channel and App are produced by NHNZ of New Zealand and Beach House Pictures of Singapore (“BHP”). It is their first major joint initiative after being acquired by David Haslingden, former President of Fox Networks Group. “Given NHNZ and BHP’s rich tradition in natural history programming, a channel devoted to wildlife was a perfect fit for their expertise and their passion. ZooMoo is the first ever children’s channel devoted entirely to animals as well as being the first channel of any kind to be fully synchronized with an evolving digital game for phones and tablets.”
ZooMoo’s programming strategy is lead by Sydney Suissa who joined ZooMoo in 2012 after a long career at National Geographic Channel as EVP of Content he oversaw all of the programming carried by Nat Geo Channels around the World. “As every parent knows, children have a natural affinitity and affection for animals. The chance to be the first group to use the power of TV to fully tap directly into that was too good to pass up”.
Commenting on the unique interactive functions of the channel, Mr. Suissa said “Every parent also knows that kids love playing with their parent’s smart phone or tablet! If your child does that while watching ZooMoo they can automatically collect every animal they see and continue to learn and play with them. Parents can use the App to see what their kids have watched and to have informed discussions about the animals they’ve collected, their habitats, eating habits, sounds and names, as well as concepts such as endangerment.”
The inventive genius behind much of ZooMoo’s programming is Emmy Award-winning Creative Director Ian McGee. 25 years ago Mr. McGee took his Zoology degree to NHNZ to produce television about animals. “Producing ZooMoo is the best job in the world. We find fascinating facts about the planet’s most amazing animals, mix them together with some of the world’s best wildlife footage, and throw in a cast of crazy puppet and animated characters. What’s not to love?”
Heading the BHP Kids team in Singapore, Susan Oliver is one of Australia’s most experienced pre-school producers having worked on hundreds of hours children’s TV for the international market. “Working with the Singapore team on this unique network that educates and entertains kids in all things animals is an absolute joy. There isn’t a day that goes by that I am not laughing at our puppets or learning something new about animals.”
The ZooMoo App was created by Dr. George Sealy working together with Civolution’s cutting edge digital watermarking and fingerprinting applications for media. Dr. Sealy commented: “ZooMoo is the first channel designed from its inception with the goal of co-existing on a synchronized basis across multiple screens. This allows us to use the unique characteristics and functionalities of different screens to tailor the way we bring the make the wonders of our animal kingdom entertaining and informative for our young audiences all over the World. I’d like to pay particular tribute to our technology providers at Civolution for providing the revolutionary watermarking technology that makes this all possible.
At launch ZooMoo’s programming comprises over 3,000 separate animal stories which have been scheduled into unique one hour blocks under a structure developed in consultation with leading childhood learning specialists.
The ZooMoo channel was first launched in Brazil in September 2013 and is slated to launch in other markets across Latin America, Europe and Asia this year. The ZooMoo App is a free download available on iOS and Android. Check out the ZooMoo website for videos, photos and more. Follow ZooMoo on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Pinterest.
NHNZ is a major global producer of factual television creating original content for Animal Planet, Discovery, Smithsonian, Nat Geo Wild, CCTV and NHK. Highly regarded for its 35-year plus natural history heritage, more recently NHNZ has branched out to other factual genres with hit shows like I Survived… for A&E’s Bio Channel and Redwood Kings for Animal Planet. The company’s storytelling prowess has been recognized with more than 250 international awards including Emmy awards and the prestigious Wildscreen Panda. In addition to its base in Dunedin, New Zealand, NHNZ has offices in Beijing and Washington DC. www.nhnz.tv
Beach House Pictures is an award-winning TV production company based in Singapore and Taiwan that specializes in factual, kids and entertainment content for the international market. To date, BHP has produced over 300 hours of quality television programs with its partners. www.beachhousepictures.com