Genius Brands Raises $4.5M for 'Rainbow Rangers'

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Rob Minkoff

The money is coming in the form of convertible debt from 32 Ventures, an investment firm founded by Robert Wolf, the former chairman and CEO of UBS Americas.

Genius Brands said Tuesday that it has raised $4.5 million to help with the big push it is making for Rainbow Rangers, the animated TV show debuting on Nick Jr. on Nov. 5.

Rainbow Rangers comes largely from Disney alumni, including Rob Minkoff, who directed The Lion King in 1994 and Shane Morris, a co-writer of Frozen.

Rainbow Rangers targets preschoolers and tells of seven magical girls who live in a land of unicorns and trolls and defend people, animals and the planet.

Genius already has 20 licensing partners for Rainbow Rangers and 300 products based on the property lined up, including toys, dolls, Halloween costumes, bikes, school supplies and clothing.

The $4.5 million is coming in the form of convertible debt from 32 Ventures, an investment firm founded by Robert Wolf, the former chairman and CEO of UBS Americas. Other media investments from 32 include Endless Entertainment and First Fruits Entertainment. The firm is also helping bankroll a Broadway musical version of the 1982 film Tootsie and has financed volunteer network MobilizeAmerica. 

"Our Rainbow Rangers property is poised to become a widely recognized and beloved kids brand — both on screen and on shelves," said Genius CEO Andy Heyward, who is executive producing the series.

Genius, headquartered in Beverly Hills, is publicly traded on Nasdaq and its shares closed 3 cents lower to $2.32 on Tuesday, leaving it with a $21 million market capitalization. Some of its other properties include Thomas Edison's Secret Lab and Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club, while its library includes Stan Lee's Cosmic Crusaders.