Game developer Epic Games has acquired UK-based technology company SuperAwesome, which offers 'kid-safe' products to publishers and advertisers designed to ensure children have a safe and appropriate experience online.
Terms of the deal—announced Friday (September 25)—have not been disclosed, but SuperAwesome said that the acquisition will allow it to "further its mission to make the internet a safer place for kids".
“The internet was never designed for kids so we started SuperAwesome to make it as easy as possible to enable safe, privacy-driven digital experiences for children everywhere," said Dylan Collins, co-founder and CEO of SuperAwesome. "Partnering with Epic Games gives us the opportunity to deliver that promise on a scale which simply wouldn’t have been possible on our own. We’re proud and excited to be working together to make the internet safer for kids."
SuperAwesome added that it remains committed to supporting existing customers, which includes the likes of Activision, Hasbro, Mattel, Cartoon Network, Spin Master, Nintendo and more.
The company offers products to content owners, advertisers, creators and parents. Ad platform AwesomeAds allows brands to purchase ads on kids content across mobile and OTT programmatically in a privacy-compliant manner. Kids Web Services is a consent-management platform for publishers to manage parental consent and oversight. PopJam is a social-content platform for under-13s to create art, experiment with filters and play games. Brands can create custom channels within PopJam to engage kids, similar to how they leverage adult social-media platforms. SuperAwesome Creators is a talent-management arm.
SuperAwesome also operates a joint venture in Asia called TotallyAwesome, offering the same digital advertising tools and talent incubator. The Singapore-headquartered company was established in 2015 as a partnership between SuperAwesome and Southeast Asian venture investor Inspire Ventures. Will Anstee joined TotallyAwesome as CEO in July this year from his role as Asia Pacific president of Mediabrands' Initiative. Check out Campaign's profile of TotallyAwesome as part of our 'Circle of Influencers' infographic feature earlier this year.
Epic Games publishes one of the world's most popular games, Fortnite, which is popular among kids and preteens. The game developer also operates Unreal Engine, a game engine it licenses to more than 11 million developers. Combining SuperAwesome's technology with the game engine will allow developers to manage parental consent, as an example.
Tim Sweeney, the founder and CEO of Epic Games, said: "More kids interact online than ever before and now is the time to double down on their safety. SuperAwesome is the company developers want to work with to make better online content for kids. We share the belief that digital experiences are better when you go the extra mile to respect privacy and we’re thrilled to invest in this future alongside the talented SuperAwesome team."
The game developer is also incredibly lucrative. It was valued at US$17.3 billion in August after a $1.78 billion funding deal. It reported annual revenue of $4.2 billion in 2019 and $730 million in earnings.