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Spin Master sets up $100m fund for strategic entertainment acquisitions

Spin Master is behind PAW Patrol

Toronto-based children’s entertainment company Spin Master has created a US$100m fund dedicated to making strategic minority investments in entertainment companies.

The Canadian company will make those investments through its newly launched division Spin Master Ventures (SMV), which aims to accelerate its growth in toys, entertainment and digital games.

SMV’s investment mandate “will be centred on medium and long-term trends including emerging technologies, pioneering services and other areas where Spin Master’s offering can be strengthened,” said Spin Master in a statement.

The US$100m, which comes from existing internal resources, will be used to invest in early-stage companies and start-ups, new teams and novel ideals. Initially, SMV’s investments will be focused on the North American and European markets.

The publicly traded firm, which is behind global franchises such as PAW Patrol, has already invested in a pair of companies, Sweden’s Nørdlight and Canada-headquartered Hoot Reading.

Mobile game development company Nørdlight has worked on some of the highest-grossing mobile digital games in history including running the prototype team at and leading the technology and art for digital games titles including Candy Crush Saga.

The minority acquisition will “help accelerate Spin Master’s strategy of monetizing its owned IP in the digital games space,” it said.

Hoot Reading is an online tutoring service that provides children with live, one-to-one reading lessons with experienced teachers.

“The pace of innovation within the toys, entertainment and digital games industries is accelerating rapidly and by investing with a long-term view in leading ventures with promising ideas, we can increase our access to potentially game-changing thinking and concepts,” said Ronnen Harary, Spin Master’s co-founder and board chair.

“Spin Master Ventures will establish us as the partner of choice for entrepreneurs looking for capital to start and grow a business in the kids’ space and will complement our acquisition strategy as well as bolster our product development pipeline.”

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