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Disney Buys Baby Einstein

7 Nov, 2001 By: Joan Villa

Disney has acquired toy and video maker, The Baby Einstein Company, and plans to expand the educational toddler titles to include a “Little” series for preschoolers in fall, 2002.

The award-winning franchise covers VHS, DVD, CDs and most recently, books and toys, that expose babies to language, poetry, music, art and science. Robert Iger, Disney's president and c.o.o., calls the acquisition a “core element of our company-wide learning initiative for children” that will extend Disney's reach into the family segment.

Artisan Home Entertainment had distributed the Baby Einstein line of some half-dozen videos since February, 2000, and owned a 20% stake in the Lone Tree, Colo.-based company. Artisan gives up ownership and distribution in exchange for a percentage of the sales price, says a source familiar with the deal.

Disney did not disclose how much it paid for the six-year-old privately held company.

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