Dr. Seuss taps bankers to value franchise

Dr. Seuss is the top literary license in the U.S. by print sales with 7.6 million units sold in 2021, according to NPD BookScan

Dr. Seuss Enterprises, the private company that manages the work of the late Theodor Seuss Geisel, is reportedly in talks with top bankers to determine the value of its intellectual property. 

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Two sources familiar with the matter told Axios that the move was prompted by the sale of the Roald Dahl Story Company to Netflix in September. The sources emphasized that a sale is not imminent. 

Representatives for Dr. Seuss Enterprises did not immediately return FOX Business' request for comment. 

Theodore Geisel better known as Dr. Seuss poses for a portrait in December 1985 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Aaron Rapoport/Corbis/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

According to NPD BookScan, Dr. Seuss is the top literary license in the U.S. with 7.6 million units sold in 2021. The firm notes that Dr. Seuss' ‘Oh, The Places You’ll Go!’ was among the top ten best-selling books in April. 

Last year, Dr. Seuss Enterprises ceased publication and licensing of six books due to racist and insensitive imagery, including "And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street," "If I Ran the Zoo," "McElligot's Pool," "On Beyond Zebra!," "Scrambled Eggs Super!," and "The Cat's Quizzer".

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 02: The Cat In The Hat attends Read Across America Day Celebrates Dr. Seuss' Birthday at Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum on March 2, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images)

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In March, Dr. Seuss Enterprises announced a partnership with Penguin Random House Children's Books to launch Seuss Studios, a line of books for early readers by new and emerging authors and illustrators who will create original stories inspired by Geisel’s unpublished sketches and illustrations.

A customer looks at books by Dr. Seuss in a bookstore in Brooklyn, New York, U.S., March 2, 2021. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid (REUTERS/Brendan McDermid / Reuters)

"We look forward to putting the spotlight on a new generation of talent who we know will bring their unique voices and style to the page, while also drawing inspiration from the creativity and imagination of Dr. Seuss," Dr. Seuss Enterprises CEO Susan Brandt said in a statement at the time. 

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Meanwhile, Netflix said it would produce five new animated series based on the world of Dr. Seuss, including Horton Hears a Who!, The Sneetches, One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish, Wacky Wednesday and Thidwick The Big-Hearted Moose, and Variety reported that Amazon is developing a Dr. Seuss-themed baking competition series. 

In addition, Dr. Seuss Enterprises established a partnership in 2018 with Warner Brothers Animation Group produce multiple feature films based on Dr. Seuss' iconic characters and stories. Comcast's Universal also has a Dr. Seuss-themed area known as Seuss Landing at its Islands of Adventure theme park in Florida.