Penguin Random House has been appointed the master publishing partner for the popular global pre-school brand, Bluey. Working in partnership with BBC Studios, the publishing house will be launching the first three books in the series to the US market this October, before rolling them out to the UK in the second half of 2021.
The Emmy-winning animated series, created by Ludo Studio, will be landing on Disney+ in the UK next year. With the global rights in all languages (excluding China and Chinese languages), Penguin Random House will be launching two storybooks and one activity book to regions across the globe.
Jan Paterson, the head of book and audio publishing at BBC Studios, said: “We are delighted to partner with Penguin Random House to bring Bluey from the screen to the page for a wonderfully varied collection of fantastic story and activity books for little ones around the world.”
Suzy Raia, VP consumer products and business development, BBC Studios – Americas, said: “Love for Bluey continues to grow among families with young children around the US, and we are looking forward to bringing the stories beyond screens into beloved books we know pre-schoolers will enjoy with their parents.
“The partnership with Penguin Random House is a wonderful addition to a growing licensing program that started with Moose Toys last month. There are many more exciting things ahead for our favourite Blue Heeler.”
Penguin Random House Australia already holds the publishing rights to Bluey in Australia, where the books have enjoyed phenomenal success, selling one million copies in only seven months. The first three Bluey titles, which launched in November 2019, were the second, third and fourth-highest selling Australian children’s books of the year.
Since their launch, titles from the Bluey franchise have held the number one position in Nielsen BookScan’s official Australian bestseller charts a total of 24 weeks (out of 42 weeks).
Francesca Dow, managing director at Penguin Random House UK Children’s, added: “We are thrilled to be publishing Bluey and bringing a bit of the Australian sunshine to the UK. Bluey has a unique charm that appeals to children and adults alike. Her stories are full of boundless energy, brilliant adventures and fun and, most important, are rooted in family experience, which is why they’ve been such a hit with viewers so far.
“We are excited by the unparalleled success in Australia and look forward to creating the same sensation here in the UK. Our wish is for all young children and families to fall in love with Bluey, as we have done.”
The Bluey books have received industry recognition when Bluey: The Beach was awarded the 2020 Book of the Year – the first time in the history of the Australian Book Industry Awards that a children’s picture book has won this prestigious award.
Bluey follows the adventures of a lovable six-year-old Blue Heeler, who lives with her dad, Bandit; mum, Chilli; and four-year-old little sister, Bingo. In each episode, Bluey uses her limitless Blue Heeler energy to play elaborate games that unfold in unpredictable and hilarious ways, bringing her family and the whole neighbourhood into her world of fun.
Bluey is the most watched series ever on Australia’s ABC iview, with over 261 million plays for series 1 and 43 million plays for series 2.
In June 2019, BBC Studios struck a global broadcast deal with Disney to premiere the first two series of Bluey on Disney Junior and Disney+ in all territories outside Australia, New Zealand and Greater China including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan.