Russell Hicks’ Curiosity Ink To Be Acquired by Grom Social

The Hollow Grom Social Russell Hicks
'The Hollow" is one of the animated shows produced by Grom Social (Image credit: Top Draw)

Grom Social Enterprises said it acquired kids entertainment company Curiosity Ink Media and will install its president and chief creative officer, former top Nickelodeon exec Russell Hicks, as chief creative officer of Grom.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Russell Hicks Grom Media

Russell Hicks (Image credit: Grom Media)

Grom has also hired another former Nickelodeon executive, Paul Ward as president of Grom Social and executive VP, social enterprises.

“We expect that the acquisition of Curiosity will strengthen our foothold in original content production and allow us to explore synergies across our animation, social media and educational services while fortifying our mission to serve kids and families in a variety of ways,” said Grom CEO Darren Marks. “We believe the arrival of Russell and Paul to drive Grom’s portfolio, along with the addition of Curiosity Ink Media, will be a watershed moment for us. We are energized and elated by the possible opportunities the addition of Russell, Paul and Curiosity Ink Media represent.”

Hicks launched Curiosity Inc. in 2018 after serving as president of development and production at Nickelodeon. Hicks will continue to oversee Curiosity Ink’s film, television and publishing projects. He will also be president of Grom’s Top Draw Animation subsidiary and work with the studio’s CEO and founder Wayne Dearing and its executive senior VP Stella Dearing.

Paul Ward Grom Social

(Image credit: Grom Social)

Over 22 years, Top Draw has produce animated series including Tom & Jerry, The Hollow, Monster Beach and Penn Zero.

Grom expects that by adding Curiosity, it will be able to provide content to subscription video on demand services. 

Ward was executive VP at the Nickelodeon Kids and Family Group until 2013 and has been a brand and public relations consultant since then. Ward will work on building Grom’s emerging COPPA-compliant media platform and spearhead Grom Educational Services, which does web filtering for education, government and private business.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.