Source: Genius Brands International, Inc.
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Genius Brands International Expands the Licensing Program for Its Highly-Anticipated New Preschool Brand Rainbow Rangers

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., Aug. 15, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Genius Brands International, Inc. "Genius Brands" (NASDAQ:GNUS) continues to build the licensing program for its animated preschool series Rainbow Rangers with the appointment of new key licensees, including Global Design Concepts, Inc. (bags and luggage), Handcraft (underwear) and Taste Beauty (bath and beauty products).

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/091ec668-45e8-45d0-bae0-a3a5c9b7971e

Currently in development on season one and two (52 x 11’ episodes), Rainbow Rangers is slated to premiere in 2018 on the No. 1 rated kids’ network Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr., along with a comprehensive retail program spearheaded by Mattel’s Fisher-Price Toys as master toy partner.  Previously announced licensing partners H.E.R. Accessories (accessories), Bentex (apparel) and Franco Manufacturing (bedding and home décor).

“The industry’s response to Rainbow Rangers continues to bolster are expectations for this colorful, engaging and empowering series for young viewers,” said Genius Brand’s SVP of Worldwide Consumer Products Lloyd Mintz.  “Each new partner and every branded product line we introduce in support of Rainbow Rangers fuels greater interest and ultimately, will bolster what is already anticipated to be a tremendously successful new preschool brand.”

“We’re very eager and excited to align our specialty bags, backpacks and luggage with the positive and empowering message delivered in each episode of Rainbow Rangers,” said Carol Pedelty of Global Design Concepts.

“Like Genius Brands and its positive messaging for children via Rainbow Rangers, we at Handcraft put the emphasis on positive consumer experiences and reinforcing community support.  We are very pleased to have been selected by Genius Brands to develop and distribute branded underwear for girls and boys that supports Rainbow Rangers and look forward to a long and successful association,” added Marshall Mizrahi, Vice President of Handcraft.

“Little girls the world over will be drawn to the characters and examples provided by Genius Brands’ Rainbow Rangers, and we want to be associated with those messages of empowerment and possibility,” said Taste Beauty’s Managing Partner Alex Fogelson.

Created as the first mission-based action adventure series targeting preschool girls, Rainbow Rangers is an empowering, exciting, behind-the-curtain peek at the lives of Earth's First Responders whose mission is to help protect the earth’s environment and its animal inhabitants. The series seamlessly blends fantasy and action-adventure with relatable, accessible stories about friendship and saving the environment. The Rainbow Rangers–seven girls, each a different color of the rainbow with her own wildly unique personality and special power–band together to save the day whenever there's trouble for the animals or natural wonders of Earth. Every storyline is designed to show young viewers the importance of working together and that actions both big and small can make the world a better place. 

Boasting a unique and highly-accomplished team of creators from the animated motion picture world, Rainbow Rangers’ creative development and production team includes Rob Minkoff (Disney’s The Lion King director), Shane Morris (Disney’s Frozen co-writer), Tim Mansfield and New York Times Bestselling author and Emmy-nominated writer Elise Allen (Dinosaur Train, Lion Guard, Barbie specials) who is serving as head writer and co-creator. Genius Brands’ Chairman and CEO and multiple Emmy-winning producer of more than 5,000 episodes of children's programming Andy Heyward serves as executive producer, with legendary Disney alum Ruben Aquino creating key designs. Aquino is responsible for the design and animation of many of Disney’s most iconic characters from award-winning films including “The Lion King,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Mulan” and “Frozen.”   

About Genius Brands International
Headquartered in Beverly Hills, California, Genius Brands International, Inc. (NASDAQ:GNUS) is a leading global media company developing, producing, marketing and licensing branded children’s entertainment properties and consumer products for media distribution and retail channels. Led by award-winning creators and producers, Genius Brands distributes its content worldwide in all formats, as well as a broad range of consumer products based on its characters. In the children's media sector, its portfolio of “content with a purpose” includes new preschool properties Rainbow Rangers for Nick Jr. and Llama Llama for Netflix; tween music-driven, YouTube brand SpacePOP; award-winning toddler brand Baby Genius; adventure comedy series Thomas Edison's Secret Lab, and Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club, created with and starring iconic investor Warren Buffett. The Company is also co-producing an all-new adult animated series, Stan Lee's Cosmic Crusaders, with Stan Lee's Pow! Entertainment and The Hollywood Reporter. Genius Brands’ Kid Genius Cartoon Channel is currently available in approximately 50 million households. For additional information please visit www.gnusbrands.com.

About Global Design Concepts, Inc. (GDC)
Founded in 1999, Global Design Concepts, Inc. (GDC) quickly became a leading design and distribution company of licensed, branded and private label accessories to all retail channels.  Headquarters in New York City with an office and its own state of the art sample room in Shenzhen, China, GDC produces over 40 million fashion accessories and customized promotional products annually for the Retail, Premium and Fashion industries including but not limited to Children's backpacks, lunch kits, handbags and luggage; Ladies handbags, totes, cosmetic bags and wallets; Gift with purchase items for brands or private label.  GDC’s expertise exceeds the design and manufacturing expectations of its customers and licensing partners. Their experienced Compliance Team ensures its factories follow the latest codes of Ethical Trading and Social Compliance.  Certification:  C-TPAT- Trade Partnership Against Terrorism.  GDC has a passion for creating and delivering products you can trust to meet your needs for innovation, quality, price, and on-time delivery.

About Handcraft
In 1946, Handcraft, a family company, had its humble beginnings as its founder went door to door selling men's handkerchiefs. Focusing on quality and creativity in packaging helped Handcraft grow and become an important player in what was once a staple in everyone’s household.  As times changed, Handcraft evolved and continued to grow. In the late 90s, the company began making children's underwear with the trust of a small number of licensors. Today, Handcraft holds the rights to over 70 properties and its range of products continues to grow and evolve with the demands of its target market, and supplying to top retailers internationally.  With offices in New York, New Jersey, Arkansas, Philippines, China and Bangladesh, Handcraft has spread its roots and continues to push the core values of the mission statement. It operates its worldwide facilities in compliance with all applicable environmental laws and regulations. It looks to design products, processes, equipment and packaging that are environmentally friendly and economically viable. In addition, the company encourages its employees to help support the local community, providing funding to many charities, donating food and toys when needed, and of course providing underwear to those less fortunate.

About Taste Beauty LLC

Founded in 2015 by a trio of proven executives (a.k.a. the Tastebuds!) with 30+ years combined experience in the licensed cosmetics industry, Taste Beauty was founded with a hungry spirit and a passion to drive innovation through the most unique products, highest quality and unprecedented customer service. Taste specializes in developing branded and private label cosmetics & personal care products for all retail channels. We are deeply passionate about driving real incremental growth and innovative first-to-market products for our partners. Taste was born at the intersection of creativity, service and execution - we jump through hoops and make things happen fast.  Taste was built on a strong culture of trust, integrity, transparency and simply treating people well. Our values drive us every single day.  Our products are safe, effective and made with the highest quality flavors, fragrances and formulations - and we believe they should always make you smile :). 

Forward-Looking Statements:
Forward-Looking Statements: Certain statements in this press release constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Words such as "may," "might," "will," "should," "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "continue," "predict," "forecast," "project," "plan," "intend" or similar expressions, or statements regarding intent, belief, or current expectations, are forward-looking statements. While the Company believes these forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on any such forward-looking statements, which are based on information available to us on the date of this release. These forward-looking statements are based upon current estimates and assumptions and are subject to various risks and uncertainties, including without limitation those set forth in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2016, under the heading "Risk Factors," and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"), not limited to risk factors relating to its patent business contained therein. Thus, actual results could be materially different. The Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or alter statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

MEDIA CONTACT:  Michelle Orsi, Three.Sixty Marketing & Communications, (310) 418-6430, michelle@360-comm.com

INVESTOR RELATIONS CONTACT:  Michael Porter, PLR Investor Relations, 212.564.7000, mike@plrinvest.com
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