Software publisher Global Software Publishing Ltd (GSP) has acquired the licence to market and distribute BBC Worldwide's range of PC products in the UK.
The deal means GSP adds the award-winning range of BBC Worldwide software to its portfolio that includes titles from Dorling Kindersley, Disney, Letts Educational, The Times Software Series, Mr Men & Little Miss, Atari and Warner Bros.
The catalogue of titles, previously published through its BBC Multimedia business, includes award-winning 'edutainment' software based on a variety of children's TV brands, including Tweenies, Bob the Builder and Engie Benjy. In addition, the range includes TV-based computer games such as Robot Wars and Ace Lightning.
The agreement with GSP completes BBC Worldwide's move to a licensing operation in the software industry. Going forward, BBC Worldwide will look to develop its diverse range of brands and IP through partnerships with software publishers, and not publish titles itself through BBC Multimedia.
Dave Brass, Managing Director, GSP, said: "I'm delighted to be adding the BBC Worldwide range to our ever growing catalogue of best sellers. The high quality of BBC Worldwide's software, and diverse mix of titles will further consolidate GSP's position as the UK's No.1 Childrens publisher of PC CD ROMs."
BBC Worldwide's Sales & Marketing Director Multimedia, Andy Johnson said: "The combination of our high quality products and GSPs scale of operation will ensure the range benefits from a continued high profile presence and success at retail.
"This arrangement also allows us to focus our efforts on our core brand management strengths, while looking to develop properties in the software industry through partnership, as opposed to developing and publishing ourselves."
Since 1994, GSP has grown steadily to become one of the UK's leading consumer software publishers with a range of over 300 CD-ROM titles, many of which dominate the CD-ROM charts in the UK.
In April 2000, French lifestyle publisher EMME acquired GSP through a flotation on the French Stock Exchange's Noveau Marché. As part of the pan-European EMME Group GSP continues to trade as a British company, marketing its own product range under the GSP brand as well as publishing titles from other major brands such as Disney, Atari, Warner Bros., Letts Educational and The Times Software Series.
In February 2001, GSP became the exclusive publisher and distributor of the highly respected Dorling Kindersley multimedia CD-ROM catalogue. The addition of the DK product portfolio made GSP one of the strongest children's and educational software publishers in the UK.
Earlier in 2004 GSP was appointed exclusive republisher for Riverdeep's range of education, childrens and productivity CD Roms adding titles such as Scooby Doo, Mavis Beacon, PrintShop and Reader Rabbit , to its portfolio.
GSP is the market leader in both the UK Educational and Childrens market and currently enjoys in the region of 50% market share in both sectors. (source: Charttrack)
About BBC Worldwide
BBC Worldwide Limited is the commercial consumer arm, and a wholly owned subsidiary, of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The company was formed in 1994 to develop a co-ordinated approach to the BBC's commercial activities: television, channels, publishing, product licensing, internet and interactive.
BBC Worldwide exists to maximise the value of the BBC's assets for the benefit of the licence payer, and re-invest in public service programming. In 2003/2004 BBC Worldwide returned £141 million to the BBC.