PEANUTS Childrens Publishing Rights Acquired by Running Press

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PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 8 // -- Running Press Book Publishers (RP), an imprint of the Perseus Books Group, is pleased to announce its acquisition of the primary PEANUTS children's publishing license from United Media (UM), the agency that syndicates and licenses PEANUTS by Charles M. Schulz.

    The deal with UM will initiate a novelty children's book line that will focus on the vast amount of content derived from the PEANUTS comic strip and popular television specials. Already in the works for a fall 2007 release is "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown."

    "We are thrilled to have acquired this license and to be involved with such an evergreen property," said RP Publisher Jon Anderson. "Running Press has always thrived by focusing on tried-and-true, classic properties, rather than trying to stay on top of every new licensing trend. No other program matches that strategy better than PEANUTS. It's truly the perfect complement to our carefully crafted list."

    For more than 50 years, Schulz's characters have been a beloved entertainment brand. Recognized by more than 90% of consumers, they transcend the boundaries of age by appealing not only to the children's market but adult collectors as well. The strips, still published in daily newspapers and on Snoopy.com, are actually reprints from the 50-year/18,000-strip history of PEANUTS. Classic television specials such as "A Charlie Brown Christmas" and "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown," as well as new ones like "He's a Bully, Charlie Brown" air annually on ABC and deliver top ratings. The property's relevance, charm, and timeliness today are perhaps the most powerful proof of its quality.

    "Running Press Kids has the vision and know-how to create unique, interactive, and exciting books for the PEANUTS Publishing Program," said Kelli Chipponeri, Senior Editor at RP. "We are committed to celebrating the classic milestones that have become part of our collective history over the years. From Charlie Brown's Christmas Tree to Linus' blue blanket, these images have become ingrained in American culture."

    "Partnering with Running Press, known for its attention to quality publishing, is key as we continue to strategically maintain and grow the core PEANUTS business," said Jean Sagendorph, Licensing Director for publishing at United Media. "Utilizing the breadth of content available to them, Running Press will surely roll out a creative and interesting line of books featuring the lovable PEANUTS characters."

    About Running Press

    RP has been providing consumers with an innovative list of quality books and book-related kits since 1972. RP creates more than 200 new titles a year under four imprints: Running Press, Running Press Miniature Editions(TM), Running Press Kids, and Courage Books. Running Press is a member of the Perseus Books Group, an independent company dedicated to enabling the success of independent publishers, whether they are wholly owned, joint ventures or completely independent companies. Members of the Perseus Books Group include Basic Books, Basic Civitas, Counterpoint, Da Capo Press, Running Press and Westview Press, as well as a partnership with PublicAffairs and Vanguard. For more information, visit http://www.perseusbooks.com.

    About United Media

    UM is a worldwide licensing and syndication company that focuses on building brand equity around a wide range of creative content. The company recently partnered with Lionsgate to build a licensing program around the 20th Anniversary of the popular film "Dirty Dancing." It also signed with Mary Engelbreit Studios, the business behind the popular and prolific artist, and Televisa, a leading Spanish speaking media company, to represent the U.S. rights to its long-running hit television series "El Chavo." United Media licenses and/or syndicates other properties, including PEANUTS, Precious Moments, Raggedy Ann & Andy, Jakers!, Tamagotchi, Dilbert, Doodle Bear and Jim Benton's "It's Happy Bunny" (Japan Only). United Media is an E.W. Scripps Company. For more information, visit http://www.unitedmedialicensing.com.

     Contact: Craig Herman

     Running Press, VP Marketing & Publicity

     215.567.5080 x 220

     craig.herman@perseusbooks.com
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