Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN), a division of Viacom Inc. (VIA, VIAB), announced a collaboration with Youku, the video streaming platform of Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA), to develop and produce an original animated series with the working titleLittle Luban. A Memorandum of Understanding for a multi-year content development and distribution partnership between the two companies was signed.
Little Luban will feature characters and themes that the production partners believe will resonate with viewers around the world. Global values of friendship and teamwork, along with specific elements of Chinese culture and philosophy will be incorporated into both the storyline and the visuals. The original production is targeted at younger kids audience, but is also intended to be enjoyed as family-viewing.
The development and production of the animated series will leverage the content development expertise and production resources of Viacom International Studios (VIS), which is responsible for all international content syndication, format sales and production and co-production activities for Viacom outside the U.S.
Youku and VIMN will also further cooperate to develop and license a range of consumer products to support the series.