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Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, Inc.
Company typePublic
NasdaqCSSE
IndustryPublishing
Licensing
Internet
Consumer packaged goods
Entertainment
FoundedJune 28, 1993; 31 years ago (1993-06-28)[1]
FoundersJack Canfield[2] and Mark Victor Hansen[3]
Headquarters
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
William J. Rouhana, Jr.[5]
(chairman & CEO)
Amy Newmark[6]
(publisher)
Subsidiaries
Websitecssentertainment.com

Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, Inc. is an American self-help, consumer goods and media company based in Cos Cob, Connecticut. It is known for the Chicken Soup for the Soul book series. The first book, like most subsequent titles in the series, consisted of inspirational true stories about ordinary people's lives. The books are widely varied, each with a different theme. Today, Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC continues to publish about twelve[7] new books per year.

The company has branched out into other categories such as food,[8] pet food,[9] and television programming.[10][11]

History

Books

Motivational speakers Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen collaborated on the first Chicken Soup for the Soul book, compiling inspirational, true stories they had heard from their audience members. Many of the stories came from members of the audience of their inspirational talks. The book was rejected by major publishers in New York but accepted by a small, self-help publisher in Florida called HCI.[12]

After the success of the first book, Canfield and Hansen, with HCI, published additional, similar Chicken Soup for the Soul titles.[13] Later, they published Chicken Soup for the Soul books for specific demographics, such as Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul, which came out in 1997[14] and was a major best-seller.[15] New Chicken Soup for the Soul titles and sequels to existing books have been published on a regular basis since the first book came out in 1993.[13] In 2009, author Adeline Lee Zhia Ern was found to have plagiarized the story "Happiness" by Sarah Provençal from Jack Canfield's Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul IV.[16]

A 19-episode anthology series made up of stories from the series was produced and aired in the 1999–2000 television season by PAX TV, the current-day Ion Television.[17][18][19]

Expansion from books

In 2008, the founders, Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen, sold the company to a new ownership group led by William J. Rouhana and Robert D. Jacobs.[20] Since then all new titles have been published by Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC and distributed by Simon & Schuster.[1]

Under the new ownership group, Chicken Soup for the Soul has expanded into other products besides books. The company markets pet foods under the brand Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul and a line of soups, sauces and other prepared foods under the brand Chicken Soup for the Soul.[21]

Entertainment

In 2013, the company announced plans to produce a television series and a film with Alcon Entertainment. Chicken Soup for the Soul has produced television programming with other partners, including PBS.[22] In 2016, Chicken Soup for the Soul acquired a majority stake in the website A Plus.

Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment went public in 2017.[23] Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment now owns Screen Media Ventures, LLC, an independent television and film distribution company, and Popcornflix, an ad-based online video service.

On March 28, 2019, it was announced that Sony Pictures Television would sell a majority stake of Sony Crackle to Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, after which the service would revert to the "Crackle" name.[24][25]

On November 5, 2019, it was announced that the Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment division would purchase foreign sales company Foresight Unlimited for the new Screen Media division.[26]

On December 15, 2020, Sony traded its remaining shares in Crackle for a yet to be disclosed preferential stake to Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment effectively giving them control of the ad-supported streaming service.[27] As of 2020, the series included more than 250 titles.[28]

In April 2021, Chicken Soup for the Soul acquired the film and television catalogue of Sonar Entertainment. In return, Sonar will hold a 5 percent stake in a new AVOD network featuring its library.[29] Through the acquisition, Chicken Soup now currently owns the North American rights to a majority of the Laurel & Hardy films and shorts, and most of the Our Gang library, as well as the holdings of the former RHI/Hallmark/Cabin Fever/Sonar outputs, and a majority of the Hal Roach library, all via their Halcyon Studios division.

On March 2, 2022, Chicken Soup for the Soul announced its acquisition of specialty film distributor, 1091 Pictures, for $15.55 million, in a mix of cash ($8 million) and stock (newly issued Series A preferred stock and Class A common stock). The deal included an estimated 4,000 movies and TV series from the 1091 catalog, as well as its portfolio of free, ad-supported networks and channels.[30]

On May 11, 2022, Chicken Soup for the Soul announced its intention to acquire Redbox for $357 million ($36 million in stock and $321 million in assumed debt).[31] The acquisition closed on August 11, 2022.[32]

Post-sale and bankruptcy

On April 1, 2024, Chicken Soup for the Soul received a delisting notice from Nasdaq, informing that the company's stock would be delisted from the Nasdaq after it had 180 days to return to compliance.[33]

On April 23, 2024, Chicken Soup for the Soul announced a $636.6 million loss in 2023, and warned that without any options to generate additional financing, the company may be forced to liquidate or pause operations, and seek a potential Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection filing.[34] On June 29, 2024, the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after missing a week of paying its employees and failing to secure financing.[35][36]

Awards

The original series held a spot on the New York Times Best Seller list continuously from 1994 to 1998.[37]

Chicken Soup for the Soul: What I Learned From the Dog was named "Best Anthology" of 2010 by the Dog Writers Association of America.[37]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b "What is Chicken Soup for the Soul?". chickensoup.com. February 6, 2014. Archived from the original on February 27, 2014. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  2. ^ Jack Canfield biography Archived July 8, 2011, at the Wayback Machine at official website
  3. ^ Mark Victor Hansen biography Archived July 8, 2011, at the Wayback Machine at official website
  4. ^ Contact page Archived 2014-02-24 at the Wayback Machine at official website
  5. ^ William J. Rouhana, Jr. biography Archived 2013-10-29 at the Wayback Machine at official website
  6. ^ Amy Newmark biography Archived 2013-10-29 at the Wayback Machine at official website
  7. ^ "Amazon.com: chicken soup for the soul - Chicken Soup for the Soul / Paperback: Books". amazon.com. Archived from the original on March 24, 2020. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  8. ^ Webley, Kayla (September 10, 2012). "Pop Chart". Time. Archived from the original on November 27, 2018. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  9. ^ "Chicken Soup for the Soul". chickensoupforthepetloverssoul.com. Archived from the original on May 6, 2007. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  10. ^ Alcon Entertainment (August 8, 2013). "Alcon Entertainment Prescribing 'Chicken Soup for the Soul' -- Los Angeles, Aug. 8, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --". prnewswire.com (Press release). Archived from the original on June 25, 2018. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  11. ^ "Video: Chicken Soup for the Soul". PBS Video. Archived from the original on February 24, 2015. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  12. ^ Canfield, Jack; Hansen, Mark Victor; Newmark, Amy (June 25, 2013). Chicken Soup for the Soul 20th Anniversary Edition: All Your Favorite Original Stories Plus 20 Bonus Stories for the Next 20 Years: Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Amy Newmark: 9781611599138: Amazon.com: Books. Chicken Soup for the Soul. ISBN 978-1611599138.
  13. ^ a b "Results for 'chicken soup for the soul' [WorldCat.org]". worldcat.org. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  14. ^ Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul. OCLC 733779771 – via worldcat.org.
  15. ^ "Independents/Chain Bestseller List". The New York Times. Archived from the original on August 28, 2017. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  16. ^ "Adeline Lee's apology on Silverfish Books website". Archived from the original on January 8, 2010.
  17. ^ Chicken Soup for the Soul (Drama, Family), Aron Productions, Sarah David Productions, August 17, 1999, retrieved June 30, 2024
  18. ^ Mos, Linda (May 24, 1999). "Pax TV Adds Four New Originals". Multichannel News. Retrieved June 30, 2024.
  19. ^ "PAX TV TAKING A CHANCE ON SOME ORIGINAL IDEAS". Chicago Tribune. July 31, 1999. Retrieved June 30, 2024.
  20. ^ Serving Up A New Chicken Soup Archived 2012-09-18 at the Wayback Machine, Publishers Weekly, 2 February 2002.
  21. ^ "How Chicken Soup For the Soul Started Selling Actual Soup". NBC News. March 28, 2014. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  22. ^ "Chicken Soup for the Soul: Food & Family - August 2014 on PBS". YouTube. July 3, 2014. Archived from the original on March 6, 2019. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  23. ^ Sheetz, Michael (August 18, 2017). "Chicken Soup for the Soul stock debuts on Nasdaq after crowdsourced IPO". CNBC. Retrieved June 22, 2019.
  24. ^ Hayes, Dade (March 28, 2019). "Sony Crackle Gets Reboot Via Chicken Soup For The Soul Joint Venture; Eric Berger To Depart After Deal Close". Deadline. Retrieved November 12, 2020.
  25. ^ "Sony Sells Crackle Majority Stake to Chicken Soup for the Soul | Hollywood Reporter". The Hollywood Reporter. March 28, 2019. Retrieved November 12, 2020.
  26. ^ Grater, Tom (November 5, 2019). "Chicken Soup For The Soul Entertainment Acquires Mark Damon's Production & Sales Outfit Foresight Unlimited". Deadline. Retrieved December 4, 2021.
  27. ^ "Sony Trades Crackle Equity For Stock; Full Control Of Streamer Goes To Chicken Soup For The Soul Entertainment". Deadline. December 15, 2020. Archived from the original on March 21, 2021. Retrieved December 15, 2020.
  28. ^ "Facts & Figures". chickensoup.com. September 16, 2013. Archived from the original on December 14, 2013. Retrieved February 23, 2015.
  29. ^ "Chicken Soup acquires Sonar's assets".
  30. ^ Hayes, Dade (March 2, 2022). "Screen Media Parent Chicken Soup For The Soul Entertainment Acquires 1091 Pictures In $15.6M Indie Combo". Deadline. Retrieved May 22, 2022.
  31. ^ Hayes, Dade (May 11, 2022). "Redbox To Be Acquired By Crackle Parent Chicken Soup For The Soul Entertainment In All-Stock Deal Focused On Value End Of Streaming Market". Deadline Hollywood.
  32. ^ Spangler, Todd (August 11, 2022). "Redbox Is Now Officially Part of Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment After $370 Million Deal Closes". Variety. Retrieved August 12, 2022.
  33. ^ "Chicken Soup For the Soul Receives Delisting Notification From Nasdaq". NextTV. April 1, 2024. Retrieved April 23, 2024.
  34. ^ "Chicken Soup Reports $637 Million Loss for 2023, Preps Investors for Bankruptcy". NextTV. April 23, 2024. Retrieved April 23, 2024.
  35. ^ Hayes, Dade (June 29, 2024). "Redbox Owner Chicken Soup For The Soul Entertainment Files For Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved June 29, 2024.
  36. ^ https://investorplace.com/2024/07/csse-stock-alert-chicken-soup-for-the-soul-on-the-brink-of-death-after-bankruptcy-filing/
  37. ^ a b "Chicken Soup for the Soul Awards, Announcements, and Recognition". Chicken Soup for the Soul. Archived from the original on March 12, 2018. Retrieved March 11, 2018.