FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
GLOBAL AUDIENCE FOR NARUTO™ EXPANDS AS VIZ MEDIA LICENSES HIT ANIMATED SERIES TO SBT IN BRAZIL
Partnership With Leading Broadcaster Brings Popular Action Series To The Largest Market In South America
San Francisco, CA JUNE 14, 2007 – VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), one of the entertainment industry’s most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, continues to expand the global audience base for its successful NARUTO™ animated series with the latest announcement that SBT (Sistema Brasileiro de Televisão) has been named the terrestrial broadcast partner in Brazil. SBT is one of the country’s largest television networks and is expected to debut the series in the second half of 2007. The agreement will initially bring 52 episodes of the popular animated series, about a young boy training to become a ninja, to one of the fastest growing television markets in the world The NARUTO brand already possesses a devout following in Brazil through fan access to the internet, and anticipation is expected to rise as the network prepares the series’ debut. . The agreement with SBT was brought to fruition with the assistance of Mr. Nelson Sato, director of Sato Co. who lent his assistance and support throughout the negotiations and helped solidify a new relationship between VIZ Media and SBT.
“SBT is extremely excited to partner with VIZ Media to bring NARUTO to Brazil, with it’s unique characters and interesting story lines”, states Daniela Beyruti, Network Executive of Brazil’s second largest network.
VIZ Media has licensed animated series like NARUTO and another popular titles, such as ZATCH BELL!, to several prominent broadcasters as part of an ongoing campaign to make content available to the Pan- Latin American market. To-date Chilevision (Chile) has licensed 52 episodes of NARUTO, while America TV (Peru) has acquired 52 episodes each of ZATCH BELL! and NARUTO. Televideo Services has picked up 52 episodes each of ZATCH BELL! and NARUTO for Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Honduras.
“NARUTO is becoming a global success story,” says VIZ Media Senior Licensing Manager Andrea Gonzalez. “This latest agreement presents the first opportunity to partner with SBT, and we are very excited because of their demonstrated commitment to bring innovative programming to an expanding audience. They an ideal partner for the NARUTO brand, sharing our goal to entertain with unique animated content while presenting well developed stories that reinforce positive messages about friendship, loyalty and resilience.”
About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan’s largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan Production Co., Ltd. (ShoPro Japan), VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America and a global licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including, magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, videos, DVDs, audio soundtracks and develops and markets animated entertainment from initial production, television placement and distribution, to merchandise licensing and promotions for audiences and consumers of all ages. Contact VIZ Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and web site at www.VIZ.com.