Turner Broadcasting has launched a new online virtual world for kids called Toonix.
The site aims to put self-expression and creativity at its core, with a tagline of 'Be Whoever You Want to Be'.
Following a beta launch in the UK at the start of the year, Toonix is now rolling out across EMEA. The UK soft launch, with no promotional push behind it, has seen over 250,000 registered users sign up.
Turner is now planning an extensive online and on-air marketing campaign to support the EMEA roll out.
Aimed at seven to 11 year olds, Toonix is split into three gameplay worlds - MyWorld, Games World and Shopping World. As well as create their own avatars, kids will be able to customise their own rooms, play games and complete missions, earning XP and coins which they can redeem for virtual goods and access new areas of the site.
They will also be able to chat with friends, sending pre-selected messages, gifts and stickers.
Built into the site will be advertising and sponsorship opportunities, including branded virtual goods, pop up stores, posters, costumes and discount vouchers. In addition, Turner is developing a licensing and merchandising programme for the site - it has already appointed Wow Stuff as master toy manufacturer across EMEA for Toonix.
"A truly interactive experience, Toonix puts community and imagination at its core, encouraging kids to express themselves, get creative and interact in a fun and safe environment," explained Louise Okafor, director of digital entertainment at Turner Broadcasting EMEA. "We know that kids really love the customisation and creation element, so there are many functions tied into this, whether it's the ability to change their avatar to suit their mood, play games, do daily challenges or explore the vast Toonix world.
"Toonix is a truly digital-led initiative, with advertising and licensing opportunities built into it and it's an exciting step forward in our digital strategy."