Universal Kids is an American pay television network that is owned by the NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment Group subsidiary of NBCUniversal. The network broadcasts children's programming and takes the branding of the sister company, Universal Pictures. The network's daytime lineup is heavily supplied by preschool-oriented programs, while its evening and primetime lineup are made up of programs aimed generally towards pre-teens and young teenagers.
Universal Kids was originally launched in 2005 as PBS Kids Sprout—a joint venture between PBS, Comcast, Sesame Workshop, and HiT Entertainment devoted to children's television programming aimed at a preschool audience. Following Comcast's purchase of NBCUniversal, the company gradually bought out the remaining owners' shares in the channel, reaching full ownership in 2013. The network's operations were subsequently relocated from Philadelphia to New York City and the "PBS Kids" name was dropped from its branding. The network re-branded under its current name on September 9, 2017, expanding its primetime programming to focus on a wider youth audience, while continuing to broadcast preschool-oriented programming under the "Universal Kids Preschool" branding during daytime hours.
Universal Kids is available to approximately 56 million American pay television households (48.2% of households with television) in the United States as of January 2016 (when it was still primarily known as Sprout).