The Walt Disney Company China Named A Founding Partner Of China’s Animation Creative Research and Development Initiative

Shanghai, China and Burbank, California (April 10, 2012) – The Walt Disney Company in China,  the Ministry of Culture’s China Animation Group, and Tencent, China’s largest internet service provider,  have formed a partnership, “The National Animation Creative Research and Development Cooperation,”  to advance the country’s animation industry. The organization, announced at a signing ceremony in Beijing today (Tuesday), will serve as an incubator to train local talent and develop original content that will entertain audiences in China and worldwide.

“The National Animation Creative Research and Development initiative is focused on nurturing local talent and recognizes the importance of developing original local animation content,” said Andy Bird, Chairman of Walt Disney International. “Disney’s involvement builds on our expertise and long term commitment to nurture the local original animation industry. As founding partner we look forward to working with this new creative partnership in creating content for the Chinese and international marketplace,” he added.

Mr. Bird was joined at the ceremony by Liang Gang, Chairman of the Board for China Animation Group, Ren Yuxin, a senior executive of Tencent, and Gao Zheng, deputy director general, Cultural Industry Department for the Ministry of Culture.

As part of the initiative, Disney will provide its expertise in storytelling from concept creation and story development to market research.  Disney will work with the China Animation Group and Tencent to foster local content across mediums, including television, motion pictures and digital platforms, for distribution in China and internationally. Tencent, one of China’s largest Internet service portals, will provide online marketing support.

About The Walt Disney Company
The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a diversified international family entertainment enterprise with five business segments and is a Dow 30 company with revenues of $41 billion in its most recently reported fiscal year. Disney’s first animation screened in China in the 1930s and today our long association continues with offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou with over 1000 employees. The Company has a broad range of businesses including publishing, broadcast, mobile, web, retail and its English language program, Disney English, which launched in 2008. Nearly 24 hours of Disney television programming is now available in China every week, reaching 300-360 million people each month. In September 2005, Disney opened its doors to its first theme park in China, Hong Kong Disneyland.

About China Animation Group (CAG)
CAG Group is a wholly state-owned enterprise organized with the approval and under the leadership of the Ministry of Culture.  Officially established on November 12, 2009, it currently is the only national-level state-owned cultural enterprise group in China whose mission is to guide China’s animation and game industry toward leapfrog development.  In order to further promote the development of the national animation industry and integrate resources to jointly explore and research new development models for the industry.

About Shenzhen Tencent Computer System Company Limited (Tencent).
Established in November 1998, Tencent is currently one of China’s largest Internet integrated service providers and ranks among China’s Internet enterprises with the highest number of customers served.