by Brian Robbins and Joe Davola
|Headquarters||Los Angeles, California|
DreamWorks New Media (Comcast) (51%)|
Verizon Hearst Media Partners (49%)
(Hearst and Verizon)
AwesomenessTV is an American media and entertainment company located in Los Angeles, California. It is a joint venture of DreamWorks Animation, Hearst, and Verizon Communications, with the former owning controlling interest.
Founded by Brian Robbins and Joe Davola, AwesomenessTV started as a YouTube channel and multi-channel network. Targeting teenagers and preteens, AwesomenessTV creates original web series, television shows and theatrical films across all platforms.
The AwesomenessTV YouTube channel launched as part of YouTube’s Original Programming initiative and became one of YouTube’s top performing destinations. Brett Bouttier joined as Chief Operating Officer in November 2012. By January 2013, the channel hit one billion views.
One year after the company was established, AwesomenessTV was acquired by DreamWorks Animation for $33 million in cash, it's one of the first acquisitions of a Multi-channel network by a larger corporation and the largest deals of its kind at that time.
With parent company DreamWorks Animation, AwesomenessTV launched DreamWorksTV, a YouTube channel aimed at families and kids ages 6 to 12. DreamWorksTV offers original animation and live action shows and features well-known DreamWorks Animation characters (like Shrek, Puss in Boots and Kung Fu Panda).
In October 2013, AwesomenessTV teamed up with Seventeen Magazine and Hearst Corporation to produce and manage Seventeen’s YouTube channel, featuring fashion, food, beauty, celebrity and lifestyle content.
In April 2014, AwesomenessTV acquired Big Frame, the talent management company and former multi-channel network.
Also in April 2014, AwesomenessTV debuted its consumer products division led by Jim Fielding, former CEO of Claire’s and President of Disney Stores Worldwide. In November 2014, the company launched a holiday retail pop-up shop called Scene@AwesomenessTV in Los Angeles, California.
The publishing imprint, AwesomenessINK, launched in October 2014 with two young adult novels Runaways and Side Effects based on hit AwesomenessTV web series. In December, DreamWorks Animation sold a 25% stake in AwesomenessTV for $81.25 million to the Hearst Corporation.
In August 2015, AwesomenessTV announced an output deal with Canadian children's media conglomerate DHX Media, in which the companies will co-develop and license new original content, with DHX handling international distribution and merchandising. DHX also began to acquire the studio's programming to air on its owned television network Family Channel.
With its affiliated channels, AwesomenessTV has generated over 17 billion lifetime video views, with over 150 million subscribers.
AwesomenessTV produces the television sketch comedy series called AwesomenessTV on Nickelodeon. The show includes sketches, parody videos, and hidden camera antics. Season One launched in July 2013 with 20 episodes and Season Two premiered in May 2014 with 20 episodes.
AwesomenessTV partners with leading global brands to develop campaigns for teen and millennial audiences. In addition to brands such as Old Navy, The Coca-Cola Company and Google, AwesomenessTV partnered with Royal Caribbean to create the scripted web series “Shipping Julia”, "Royal Crush" and the docu-series “YoMuscleBoii’s Royal Caribbean Adventure,” which launched on AwesomenessTV’s YouTube channel.
In September 2014, AwesomenessTV launched the new consumer product brand S.o. R.a.d. and partnered with Kohl’s Department Stores to release the first of seven capsule junior’s fashion line of the same name. The S.o. R.a.d. collection at Kohl’s is supported by four original YouTube series, “Life’s S.o. R.a.d.”, produced and distributed by AwesomenessTV and featuring a range of YouTube talent.
- Gillette, Felix. "Hollywood's Big-Money YouTube Hit Factory". Bloomberg Businessweek. August 28, 2014.
- Brian Robbins and Joe Davola, AwesomenessTV. The Paley Center for Media. May 6, 2014.
- Chmielewski, Dawn. OMG, it's a YouTube channel just for millennials. LA Times. June 24, 2012.
- Variety's New Leaders. Variety. October 24, 2012.
- Shaw, Lucas. AwesomenessTV Tops 1 Billion Views By Adding Austin Mahone, The Janoskians. The Wrap. June 6, 2013.
- Shaw, Lucas. Can Big Frame Build a Management Company for Internet Stars? The Wrap. June 18, 2014.
- Lieberman, David. DreamWorks Animation Agrees To Pay $33M+ For AwesomenessTV. Deadline. May 1, 2013.
- Spangler, Todd.DreamWorks Animation Launches YouTube Channel with Shrek, Original Series and More. Variety. June 16, 2014.
- Taintor, David. "Hearst, AwesomenessTV to Launch YouTube Effort for Seventeen". Adweek. October 16, 2013.
- Jarvey, Natalie. AwesomenessTV to Buy YouTube MCN Big Frame for $15 Million. The Hollywood Reporter. April 2, 2014.
- Lieberman, David. AwesomenessTV To Enter The Licensed Merchandise Business. Deadline. April 8, 2014.
- Shamout, Omar. "Online Network Channels Retail". Los Angeles Business Journal. October 20, 2014.
- Atkinson, Claire. "Universal Music looking to cater to the YouTube crowd". New York Post. July 20, 2014.
- Trachtenberg, Jeffrey and Winkler, Rolfe. From YouTube Stars, Literary Lions. Wall Street Journal. October 12, 2014.
- Verrier, Richard (December 11, 2014). "Hearst Corp. buys 25% stake in AwesomenessTV". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles Times Media Group. Retrieved December 16, 2014.
- "Netflix Picks Up 'Richie Rich' Live-Action Comedy from AwesomenessTV". Variety. October 29, 2014. Retrieved October 29, 2014.
- "DHX to Bring AwesomenessTV Shows to Canadian Television". Variety. Retrieved 29 August 2015.
- "Family Channel's new teen block F2N launches January 4 with the premiere of Degrassi: Next Class" (Press release). CNW. Retrieved 1 December 2015.
- to Premiere Season 2 of AWESOMENESSTV. Broadway World. May 1, 2014.
- Jarvey, Natalie. Lionsgate Acquires Worldwide Rights to The SMOSH Movie. The Hollywood Reporter. September 18, 2014.
- Rodriguez, Ashley. Old Navy CMO Aims to Lessen Brand's Reliance on TV. Ad Age. July 31, 2014. http://adage.com/article/cmo-strategy/navy-cmo-aims-lessen-brand-s-reliance-tv/294404/
- Peterson, Tim. YouTube Net AwesomenessTV Steals TV Spend for Royal Caribbean Series. Ad Age. June 30, 2014. http://adage.com/article/digital/youtube-net-awesomenesstv-steals-tv-spend-branded-shows/293909/
- Shields, Mike. Kohl's Partners With DreamWorks Unit to Market to Teens. Wall Street Journal. September 3, 2014.