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The outcome is the close of a 10-year journey for Fingerprint CEO Nancy MacIntyre, who started the company with a focus on creating digital educational and game content for children.
The London-based Sandbox focuses on education, and it has bought 13 kids education companies, such as Code Kingdom and Pop Tropica, over the years.
MacIntyre will now serve as CEO of the newly created Sandbox Kids division, which will include existing Sandbox properties Hopster and Curious World alongside Fingerprint’s Kidomi. The San Francisco-based Fingerprint, which focuses on kids under 12, has about 25 people. Sandbox Kids will work on on-demand, multimedia, multi-platform, digital subscription services for children and families around the world.
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“When I started the company, I really thought we were building kind of a Netflix for apps with the idea that we would create a platform that aggregated game, book, and video apps for kids that we could sell on a subscription basis,” MacIntyre said in an interview with GamesBeat. “And the product really kind of evolved over the past few years to be more like a multimedia on-demand product. Our service has games, books, videos, podcasts, music, all within one umbrella.”
Sandbox’s growing portfolio of global brands reaches more than 55 million families monthly. MacIntyre sees a lot of potential in serving digital content to the more than 1.14 billion kids who have access to mobile devices.
“Mobile has has really become the kid’s platform of choice,” MacIntyre said. “In the mobile games business for kids, there are always concerns about in-app purchases and advertising that parents get worried about, as well as what is the content is the content that is appropriate for kids. We curate every piece of content that goes to the platform. And we have no ads, we have no in app purchases. It’s just a subscription.”
The Sandbox Kids positions its suite of products so it “grows with a child”: Hopster for ages 1-4, Curious World for ages 4-8, and Kidomi for ages 3-12. MacIntyre said that 50% of Fingerprint’s users — about a million active families in the U.S. — log in 150 times every month. Fingerprint gets kids content for Kidomi from more than 200 content creators.
“We have known Sandbox for probably six or seven years because they had acquired several different kids companies,” MacIntyre said. “We were actually licensing content from Poptropica, Hopster, and Curious World. We knew the management teams and we had a good commercial collaboration already. About a year ago, we began to think about what what opportunities there might be if we combine these businesses.”
Collectively, these products offer more than 8,000 premium, award-winning videos, games, interactive books, songs, podcasts, and audio stories that are available globally in over 100 countries and 23 languages. The Kidomi app has had more 7 million downloads.
Sandbox Kids products can be localized for any market and are optimized for any device or platform. They support any go-to-market strategy for manufacturers, mobile carriers, and over-the-top or pay-TV companies. Sandbox Kids has content partnerships with more than 200 creators in more than 60 countries and commercial partnerships with Amazon, Comcast, T-Mobile, Verizon, TCL, Roku, Mondia Media, Vodafone, and more.
Fingerprint is the latest acquisition for Sandbox and the third in the last six months, following Teachit in the fourth quarter and Code Kingdoms earlier this month. Fingerprint’s Kidomi subscriptions cost $5 a month.
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