Back in June, DHX Media appeared ready to make itself a major player in the media market when it spent a whopping $345 million to purchase the rights to the Peanuts franchise. Now, less than four months later, DHX has lost nearly 30 percent of its share value and on Monday announced that it has appointed a special committee to help develop strategies to try and save this sinking ship. DHX has acknowledged that selling the company’s assets is certainly a possibility, leaving many to wonder if the Peanuts gang will once again be on the market.
DHX Media is a Canadian media distribution and broadcasting company that owns a number of popular franchises and shows, including the mildly creepy but inexplicably popular Teletubbies and Degrassi, which is the “bottom” Drake started from before he got here. DHX chose to purchase Peanuts Worldwide, which includes the 80 percent majority stake of Peanuts Worldwide and, less significantly, the Strawberry Shortcake brand, after the unexpected financial and critical success of the 2015 Peanuts Movie appeared to revive the beloved franchise that many assumed had not been embraced by younger generations. But thanks to mounting debt, DHX may need to sell the Peanuts brand in order to save itself from bankruptcy.
There are plenty of places that could claim the rights to Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the rest of the Peanuts gang but none are more intriguing than Netflix. The massive streaming service has released plenty of original kid’s shows and movies and has even recently begun buying IP with its acquisition of the comic book publisher Millarworld. Despite all this, Netflix has yet to have a massive hit in the world of kid’s entertainment but that could all change if it were to buy the rights to the iconic Peanuts franchise. For now, this partnership is nothing more than a fantasy but like Linus waiting all night for an appearance from the Great Pumpkin, we’re holding on to hope.