Rovio Entertainment — creator of the Angry Birds franchise — has secured exclusive rights to the Moomin brand to develop and publish Moomin video and mobile games, the first of which is expected to reach soft launch later this year.
Rovio has also invested five million euros (roughly U.S. $5.9 million) into Gutsy Animations, the studio behind the series Moominvalley. The partnership between Rovio and Moomin brings together some of Finland’s most recognizable brands and companies.
“I’m thrilled to have Rovio joining us and bolstering our efforts to create meaningful international content that leans into Nordic values,” said Gutsy Animations Founder and CCO Marika Makaroff. “This investment shows growth does not always need to come from far afield and is an incredible display of confidence in Gutsy Animations’ ability to create high quality, distinctive content for the global market. Additionally, by forging a collaboration between three Finnish companies, this partnership shows a high level of trust in Finnish know-how, as well as serving to highlight the power of storytelling through shared values.”
Founded by Makaroff in 2016, Gutsy’s flagship production is Moominvalley, based on the Moomin books and comics. The series airs on Yle in Finland as well as internationally in the U.K. and Japan.
“Gutsy Animations did an astonishing job at bringing to life the rich stories and alluring atmosphere of the Moominvalley. We are honored and excited to enter this partnership with Moomin Characters and Gutsy Animations,” said Rovio CEO Alex Pelletier-Normand. “Working with Gutsy and Moomin will give us the opportunity to present this iconic brand to new audiences across the globe at the same time as we surely will delight our existing fans. This partnership will diversify our IP portfolio, which is a key step in our consistent growth strategy.
Moomin was introduced by Finnish-Swedish writer and artist Tove Jansson in a series of books and comic strips from 1945 to 1980. Rights to the brand are owned by Moomin Characters Ltd. and represented by global licensing agency Rights & Brands.
“Moomin Characters looks to expand their digital footprint and offering, it’s fantastic to join forces with Rovio Entertainment, who bring a wealth of expertise and success in this space,” said Moomin Characters Managing Director Roleff Kråkström. “We’re confident this partnership will open up new opportunities not only to the Moomin trademark, but also to the additional Nordic story. This partnership marks an important milestone in our strategy to take local Nordic creations to the international marketplace.’’