By Andy Sambidge
Kuwait's Teshkeel wins new investment to help develop superhero TV series worldwide
UAE-based Crescent Enterprises has announced the acquisition of an equity stake in Teshkeel Media Group (TMG), the Kuwaiti creator of The 99, the acclaimed superheroes.
The acquisition was made as part of a consortium of investors that also includes Abraaj Capital's small and mid-cap investment platform.
The co-investment from Crescent Enterprises enables TMG to continue with its planned production for Season 2 of The 99, the animated TV series.
The investment will allow TMG, a media and entertainment company that develops content for children and young adults, to expand its animation and licensing footprint into new geographies.
TMG is a leading Middle East-based developer of children's entertainment products for a worldwide market.
Its acclaimed comic superhero series, The 99, is based on Middle Eastern culture and history.
In 2010, the President of the United States, Barack Obama, praised the series as "one of the most innovative ways" to spread the lessons of peace and tolerance to the children of the world.
Commenting on the transaction, Badr Jafar, managing director of the Crescent Group and CEO of Crescent Enterprises, said: "We see Teshkeel as being one of the leading companies in the sphere of social development throughout the region and beyond.
"The confluence of a profound social message with a series of dynamic, animated characters makes this an ideal investment for Crescent Enterprises and what we stand for."
Naif Al-Mutawa, CEO of Teshkeel Media Group, added: "The investment from Crescent Enterprises comes on the heels of our successful launch on MBC and Yahoo! Maktoob throughout the Middle East."
After several years of developing original content for The 99 brand, TMG is now aiming to capitalise on strategic relationships with its UK-based production partner, Endemol, and leading broadcasters in the United States to take the superhero series to the world.