Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family

Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family

Thursday, September 18th, 2014 4:31am CDT

Categories: Cartoon News, Company News, Digital Media News
Posted by: Autobot032   Views: 46,283

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The Hub is currently a joint venture between Hasbro and Discovery Networks, and has been in operation since 2010. The network aimed it's shows and movies towards families, with a large portion of the the shows being Hasbro properties, such as My Little Pony and of course, Transformers. (Including the Emmy winner, Transformers Prime and it's sequel, Beast Hunters.)

The Wall Street Journal and Variety are among the news sources bringing this late breaking news to our attention.

It's stated that Hasbro Studios's plan is to take a back seat, giving Discovery the controlling interest in the network that they've been seeking. Discovery has been trying to redirect the network to be more family-centric and less kids only.

The rebranding has no set date and the plans aren't finalized, but it is expected to occur sometime between the fourth quarter of 2014/first quarter of 2015. Hasbro will be given a block of programming from 9 AM to 3 PM, so there is no expectation that the upcoming Transformers: Robots In Disguise will be affected much, if at all.

Here's a snippet of the Variety article:
The network has seemed troubled in recent months. Margaret Loesch, the kidvid veteran who worked for legendary animator Hanna-Barbera and ran Fox Kids for a time, announced in June that she intended to step down as CEO of Hub by the end of 2014. She did so after unveiling a plan that would reshape the network’s primetime schedule to appeal to parents and kids, abandoning repeats of old sitcoms in favor of originals.

Despite making headway with “My Little Pony,” a cartoon based on the popular Hasbro toy, The Hub had trouble making a dent in Viacom’s Nickelodeon empire and Walt Disney’s suite of kid-and-tweens-focused networks.


You can read the full Variety article here and the WSJ article here.

We will keep you updated with any and all updates as they become available.

Keep your optics tuned to Seibertron.com for the latest in news and updates, plus the best galleries around!

Credit(s): Variety, The Wall Street Journal, jON3.0


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Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607147)
Posted by King Kuuga on September 18th, 2014 @ 4:47am CDT
A premium cable channel targeted at kids hasn't had the same impact as Nickelodeon and Disney's more established, basic cable networks for the same market? I wonder why that could be. :-?
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607150)
Posted by Autobot032 on September 18th, 2014 @ 5:02am CDT
That Bot wrote:A premium cable channel targeted at kids hasn't had the same impact as Nickelodeon and Disney's more established, basic cable networks for the same market? I wonder why that could be. :-?


Their two biggest mistakes were thinking they could take on the Disney juggernaut and putting the network on what's essentially a pay tier. Both were such dumb decisions. And costly it seems. Not sure why they thought making it a pay channel was the right idea, but it certainly wasn't. Neither Hasbro or Discovery are hurting for money to the point that they needed to milk it like this.

So dumb.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607154)
Posted by griftimus prime on September 18th, 2014 @ 5:22am CDT
was not watching it anyway
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607155)
Posted by Autobot032 on September 18th, 2014 @ 5:33am CDT
griftimus prime wrote:was not watching it anyway


Fortunately, the package it's included on in our cable system, is only $6.50 extra per month and it included high def channels we hadn't had prior. If not for those, however, yeah, it'd be gone from our house, too.

Prime, while greatly enjoyable, was not enough to carry a network.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607161)
Posted by Gallifreyan Autobot on September 18th, 2014 @ 6:31am CDT
what did i read? looks like they are going back to using the old Discovery Kids channel :BANG_HEAD: :-? >:oP
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607163)
Posted by Autobot032 on September 18th, 2014 @ 6:55am CDT
Autobot tap out wrote:what did i read? looks like they are going back to using the old Discovery Kids channel :BANG_HEAD: :-? >:oP


Mmm...yeah, more or less. Just with additional "I don't give a crap about this!" programming. Oh, and a little bit of Hasbro mixed in.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607165)
Posted by Gallifreyan Autobot on September 18th, 2014 @ 7:02am CDT
Autobot032 wrote:
Autobot tap out wrote:what did i read? looks like they are going back to using the old Discovery Kids channel :BANG_HEAD: :-? >:oP


Mmm...yeah, more or less. Just with additional "I don't give a crap about this!" programming. Oh, and a little bit of Hasbro mixed in.


there is always that 930 AM (Central standard/daylight time) timeslot on Cartoon Network here in the Midwest ... if all else fails ;)^ :PRAY:
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607172)
Posted by Superwheeljack on September 18th, 2014 @ 7:35am CDT
The Hub was barely worth cable back in 2010 (it was actually a good channel then). THEN when the Hub changed drastically in 2012, I lost a lot of my interest in it (GI Joe Renegades, my favorite show besides TF Prime, was cancelled)and they got rid of Dan Vs. and became too much like it's competitors and I got rid of cable. I felt relieved after I got rid of cable, I just don't need it. Besides, I can watch it online or on Netflix anyway.
I'm not looking forward to RID so I won't be dramatically altered if it ends up at 4 am on CN.
It took 2 long years for that channel to die, 2 long painful years, and now the suffering is over...
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607174)
Posted by Gallifreyan Autobot on September 18th, 2014 @ 7:44am CDT
Superwheeljack wrote:The Hub was barely worth cable back in 2010 (it was actually a good channel then). THEN when the Hub changed drastically in 2012, I lost a lot of my interest in it (GI Joe Renegades, my favorite show besides TF Prime, was cancelled)and they got rid of Dan Vs. and became too much like it's competitors and I got rid of cable. I felt relieved after I got rid of cable, I just don't need it. Besides, I can watch it online or on Netflix anyway.
I'm not looking forward to RID so I won't be dramatically altered if it ends up at 4 am on CN.
It took 2 long years for that channel to die, 2 long painful years, and now the suffering is over...


true >:oP
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607178)
Posted by PrymeStriker on September 18th, 2014 @ 8:01am CDT
Yeah, I hardly watch the Hub anymore aside from MLP (which I record and don't watch live anyway). Not sure what the hell happened here, but its probably because most of their good programs were either cancelled or ended altogether.

Also, Transformers Prime and its sequel Beast Hunters? WTF? :???:
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607180)
Posted by Sabrblade on September 18th, 2014 @ 8:06am CDT
Tis a shame since, of all the children's cable networks out there, the Hub was the most refined of the bunch with really good quality programming and a sincere image.

Man, Hasbro just can't catch a break when it comes to television. Virtually every Transformers series received less than stellar treatment on every network they aired on prior to the Hub. G1, G2, and Beast Wars were subject to the wills of syndicated scheduling, Beast Wars got censored by Fox Kids and only a single week of airtime by Toonami, Beast Machines was restricted to just Saturday mornings (but to be fair, it probably got the best treatment of any pre-Hub series), RiD (2001) suffered from 9/11 censorship, Armada, Energon, and Cybertron all fell victim to Cartoon Network putting them at the 6am weekday morning deadslots, Cybertron also had most of its new episodes split between CN and Kids WB, Animated got its fourth season halted, and Prime got censored on Vortexx. The Hub is the only network that has treated Transformers cartoons with true fairness and care in the U.S.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607227)
Posted by King Kuuga on September 18th, 2014 @ 12:00pm CDT
Honestly I loved the Hub's programming other than Prime. Batman and later Superman The Animated Series? the 60s Batman? Goosebumps? G1 and GI Joe? Good stuff. Unfortunately most of that was on at midnight, complicating the problem that this is a channel you have to buy in a premium bundle. The Hub could have been so much more if it was lower on the channel listings.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607229)
Posted by Gallifreyan Autobot on September 18th, 2014 @ 12:06pm CDT
That Bot wrote:Honestly I loved the Hub's programming other than Prime. Batman and later Superman The Animated Series? the 60s Batman? Goosebumps? G1 and GI Joe? Good stuff. Unfortunately most of that was on at midnight, complicating the problem that this is a channel you have to buy in a premium bundle. The Hub could have been so much more if it was lower on the channel listings.


Agreed
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607237)
Posted by Avensis-Mahiya on September 18th, 2014 @ 12:48pm CDT
I don't know what this will mean for future Transformers series (hopefully it won't be too bad...hopefully), but this announcement doesn't sit right with me. Maybe it's because there will be an impending Network Decay.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607238)
Posted by Sabrblade on September 18th, 2014 @ 12:51pm CDT
This change should have zero effect on Hasbro programming at least still being able to air. Since the Hasbro stuff will just be gathered together during a morning-afternoon block, all this means is that stuff like RID (2015) and MLP:FIM will be airing during the day instead of at night. No more primetime timeslots is all.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607246)
Posted by Megatron Wolf on September 18th, 2014 @ 1:06pm CDT
this isnt going to help the station much unless discovery adds better programing, even then they wont beat disney. Right now hub is mostly reruns (or at least it seems that way), dont get me wrong i like watching sliders again but if you want to get more of the family watching the channel dont rely on old programming. On another note i think they should keep the name as is cause changing it will cause confusion.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607368)
Posted by Bumblevivisector on September 18th, 2014 @ 10:09pm CDT
IIRC, those midnight G1, Joe, and Adam West Batman reruns were part of a late night block called "HUBOOM!". It seemed to me they were trying to compete directly with Adult Swim, and it made me optimistic that they'd keep dusting off other cartoons from their ever more obscure properties to see what got the biggest reaction, as research into what dead toylines to relaunch next.

Maybe I just got that idea from Matt Trakker's special guest G.I. Joe fig, and that time AS cashed in on Chuck Norris memes by rerunning Karate Kommandos (cuz if THAT could make it back on TV just by being ironic, why not Bigfoot and the Muscle Machines?), but at the time, I honestly thought they'd start rerunning Inhumanoids (It had zombies! That's a slam dunk!) and M.A.S.K. (Did they ever show any DIC cartoons?)

Sure, that dream died long ago, but this news buries it.

It doesn't encase it in amber though, so it COULD rise again, someday...
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607485)
Posted by monstrinhotron on September 19th, 2014 @ 10:26am CDT
who watches cable anymore? no-one in our house that's for sure.
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1607499)
Posted by Sabrblade on September 19th, 2014 @ 11:01am CDT
monstrinhotron wrote:who watches cable anymore?
Anyone who watches Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, etc.?
Re: Discovery To Take Controlling Interest In The Hub Network, Will Rebrand It Discovery Family (1608932)
Posted by Seibertron on September 26th, 2014 @ 8:37am CDT
-- Hasbro and Discovery Partnership Focused on Continuing Successful Creation of Entertaining and Award-Winning Content for Kids and Families --

-- Discovery Communications and Kids Television Veteran Tom Cosgrove Named GM of Discovery Family Channel Under the Leadership of Group President Henry Schleiff --


Image

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SILVER SPRING, Md. & PAWTUCKET, R.I.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Discovery Communications (NASDAQ:DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) and Hasbro, Inc. (NASDAQ:HAS) today announced The Hub Network will become Discovery Family Channel effective October 13, 2014. The network will broaden its programming focus to serve families in primetime and continue to showcase Hasbro Studios award-winning children's content in daytime.

During the daytime, Discovery Family Channel will offer a robust line up of brand new Hasbro Studios' series as well as beloved library programming, including MY LITTLE PONY, LITTLEST PET SHOP and TRANSFORMERS RESCUE BOTS, while during primetime, the network will serve a growing family audience that began to develop under The Hub Network. Primetime programming will draw from Discovery's three decades of leadership in creating the highest-quality, real-world content that appeals to the entire family in the Natural History, Adventure, Animals and Science genres. Initial series will include SUPERHUMAN, TIME WARP, FLYING WILD ALASKA, AFRICA and EXTREME ENGINEERING: BIGGEST REVEALS.

"The next chapter of our collaboration will harness the incredible content strengths of both Discovery and Hasbro to program Discovery Family Channel with highly-rated award-winning storytelling around Hasbro's brands and Discovery's most popular non-fiction shows that appeal to both children and families alike," said Hasbro President & CEO Brian Goldner. "Discovery Communications has a nearly 30-year track record of building television brands that create maximum value for advertisers and distributors through their world-class raft of programming and we look forward to evolving this network together."

Under the executive management of Group President Henry Schleiff, Tom Cosgrove will assume the role of general manager of Discovery Family Channel and will manage all network operations and programming, working closely with the Hasbro Studios team as the new channel will prominently feature Hasbro Studios-produced content in daytime. Schleiff has overseen the successful turnaround and growth of several networks within the Discovery portfolio. Previously, Cosgrove served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Discovery Channel and Science Channel and has held senior leadership positions at ABC Family, Fox Family, Fox Kids and TV Guide Channel prior to his time at Discovery. Most recently, he led 3net and 3net Studios.

"Hasbro is a world-class company with franchises and characters that appeal to kids and families around the world. They have been terrific partners over the past several years as we developed our kids television audience in the U.S., and we look forward to a continued strong collaboration as we evolve to the Discovery Family Channel together," said Discovery Communications President & CEO, David Zaslav. "Henry's proficiency in developing and growing strong brands combined with Tom's experience on Discovery's flagship brand and deep background in family programming make for a perfect leadership team to drive the network toward future growth."

The repositioning to Discovery Family Channel builds upon Discovery's ongoing strategy to maximize its portfolio of channels to satisfy viewers and drive value for distributors and advertisers, while working alongside quality content partners to create long-term value. The Hub Network has grown from nearly 56 million homes in 2010 to approximately 70 million U.S. homes today. Since launch, the strong performance of Hasbro children's content helped lift the network's total day P2-11 delivery by +89% and for the past three years, The Hub Network has consistently been the most co-viewed children's cable network among kids 2-11 watching with adults 18-49--a trend the partners plan to continue with Discovery Family.

"Brian and I want to thank the entire team at The Hub Network for their passion and dedication in building this brand over the past five years," added Zaslav. "They are a fantastic group of executives, guided by a tremendously creative and inspiring leader in Margaret Loesch. We are grateful for their work in creating a channel of which Discovery and Hasbro have been incredibly proud."

Discovery Family Channel will continue as a joint venture of Discovery Communications and Hasbro, with Discovery Communications taking a 60% ownership position in the new channel and Hasbro's stake decreasing to 40%. The network will be consolidated and managed under the Discovery portfolio of networks.

About Discovery Communications

Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) is the world's #1 pay-TV programmer reaching 2.7 billion cumulative subscribers in more than 220 countries and territories. Discovery is dedicated to satisfying curiosity, engaging and entertaining viewers with high-quality content on worldwide television networks, led by Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Investigation Discovery and Science, as well as U.S. joint venture network OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network. Discovery also controls Eurosport International, a premier sports entertainment group, including six pay-TV network brands across Europe and Asia. Discovery also is a leading provider of educational products and services to schools, including an award-winning series of K-12 digital textbooks, through Discovery Education, and a digital leader with a diversified online portfolio, including Discovery Digital Networks. For more information, please visit www.discoverycommunications.com.

About Hasbro

Hasbro, Inc. (NASDAQ:HAS) is a branded play company dedicated to fulfilling the fundamental need for play for children and families through the creative expression of the Company's world class brand portfolio, including TRANSFORMERS, MONOPOLY, PLAY-DOH, MY LITTLE PONY, MAGIC: THE GATHERING, NERF and LITTLEST PET SHOP. From toys and games, to television programming, motion pictures, digital gaming and a comprehensive licensing program, Hasbro strives to delight its global customers with innovative play and entertainment experiences, in a variety of forms and formats, anytime and anywhere. The Company's Hasbro Studios is responsible for entertainment brand-driven storytelling around Hasbro brands across television, film, commercial productions and short-form. Through the company's deep commitment to corporate social responsibility, including philanthropy, Hasbro is helping to build a safe and sustainable world for future generations and to positively impact the lives of millions of children and families every year. It has been recognized for its efforts by being named one of the "World's Most Ethical Companies" and is ranked as one of Corporate Responsibility Magazine's "100 Best Corporate Citizens." Learn more at www.hasbro.com.

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