In memoriam, Donald Sutherland

Learning Company, The

Moby ID: 40

  • Mattel Interactive (from 1999-05-13 to 2001-09-05)
  • Learning Company, Inc., The (from 1996-10 to 1999-05-12)
  • Learning Co., Inc., The (from 1981 to 1996-09)
  • Advanced Learning Technology (from 1980 to 1981)

Overview edit · view history

The Learning Company was co-founded in 1980 as Advanced Learning Technology, in 1981 changed to The Learning Co., by Ann McCormick, Leslie Grimm and Frona Kahn and based in California. The first releases focused on teaching young children math, reading and science skills. The most lucrative properties the company developed were Super Solvers, Reader Rabbit and ClueFinders. The company joined the New York Stock Exchange in 1992.

In December 1995 The Learning Co. was acquired by SoftKey International. In October 1996, SoftKey International changed its company name to The Learning Company, Inc. and relocated it to Cambridge, Massachusetts. The company was listed on the New York Stock Exchange with Ticker Symbol TLC, and the TLC initials were added to the company logo. The company also operated the subsidiary TLC Properties, Inc. from the same location.

Acquisitions by The Learning Company, Inc. included:

The Learning Company, Inc. and all its subsidiaries and divisions was acquired by Mattel Inc., the toy company, on May 13, 1999 and renamed Mattel Interactive. Mattel Interactive had the following international offices in addition to the ones in the United States. Many of these were renamed Learning Company Inc. locations.

  • Mattel Interactive Asia Pacific (Richmond, Australia)
  • Mattel Interactive Japan (Tokyo, Japan)
  • Mattel Interactive France / TLC-Edusoft (Boulogne Billancourt, France)
  • Mattel Interactive Northern Europe B.V. (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
  • Mattel Interactive Deutschland GmbH (Oberhaching, Germany)
  • Mattel Interactive, S.R.L. (Milano, Italy)
  • Mattel Interactive Spain (Barcelona, Spain)
  • Mattel Interactive Ltd (Crawley, West Sussex, UK)
  • Mattel Argentina, S.A. (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
  • Mattel de Mexico, S.A. de C.V.
  • Mattel do Brasil Ltda (Sao Paulo, Brazil)
  • Mattel de Venezuela, C.A. (Caracas, Venezuela)
  • Mattel Chile, S.A. (Santiago, Chile)
  • Mattel Colombia, S.A. (Bogota, Colombia)

Mattel then sold it to the Gores Technology Group in October 2000. After taking over The Learning Company, Gores divided it into three groups:

  • One specializing in games was branded GAME Studios by Gores in January 2001 and then was sold to French publisher Ubi Soft in March 2001. This included rights to all Strategic Simulations, Inc. games. The SSI brand has since been retired, and all other acquired properties have been absorbed into Ubisoft.
  • A second which focused on educational software, kept The Learning Company name, and was acquired by Riverdeep Interactive Learning Limited in September 2001.
  • The third group, named Brøderbund, was put in charge of home productivity software. Riverdeep then acquired all of Brøderbund in August 2002.

The Learning Company became a brand of Riverdeep Interactive Learning Limited, which owned all previous TLC and Brøderbund educational/edutainment franchises including Reader Rabbit, Carmen Sandiego, ClueFinders, and Oregon Trail.

The Learning Company became a brand of Houghton Mifflin Company (now Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) in 2006 when Riverdeep merged with that company.

Credited on 208 Games from 1981 to 2012

Displaying most recent · View all

Carmen Sandiego Adventures in Math: The Island of Diamonds (2012 on Wii)
Carmen Sandiego Adventures in Math: The Great Gateway Grab (2012 on Wii)
Carmen Sandiego Adventures in Math: The Case of the Crumbling Cathedral (2012 on Wii)
Carmen Sandiego Adventures in Math: The Big Ben Burglary (2011 on Wii)
Carmen Sandiego Adventures in Math: The Lady Liberty Larceny (2011 on Wii)
Scooby-Doo!: Case File #3 - Frights! Camera! Mystery! (2007 on Windows)
ClueFinders: Math Learning System (2006 on Windows, Macintosh)
StarFlyers 2nd Grade Learning System (2006 on Windows, Macintosh)
Zoombinis 3rd Grade Learning System (2006 on Macintosh, Windows)
Reader Rabbit: Playtime for Baby & Toddler (2005 on Windows)
Adventure Workshop: 4th-6th Grade - 5th Edition (2004 on Windows, Macintosh)
Kid Pix Deluxe 4 (2004 on Windows, Macintosh)
Reader Rabbit: Beginner Addition (2004 on Dedicated handheld)
Reader Rabbit: Early Reading Readiness (2004 on Dedicated handheld)
Reader Rabbit: Reading Readiness (2004 on Dedicated handheld)
Arthur's Pet Chase (2003 on Windows, Macintosh)
Batman: Justice Unbalanced (2003 on Windows, Macintosh)
Batman: Toxic Chill (2003 on Windows, Macintosh)
ClueFinders: Adventure Pack! (2003 on Windows, Macintosh)
Cyberchase: Castleblanca Quest (2003 on Windows, Macintosh)

[ view all ]

History +

September 6, 2001

Riverdeep Interactive Learning buys Broderbund's Education Division, The Learning Company. TLC returns to its former name, Brøderbund Software.

March 21, 2001

Ubi Soft Entertainment acquires Game Studios, the entertainment division of The Learning Company, from Gores Technology Group

October 2000

The company is acquired by Gores Technology Group.

May 13, 1999

Mattel, the worldwide toy company, buys The Learning Company and renames it Mattel Interactive.

August 31, 1998

Brøderbund Software merges with and becomes a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Learning Company.

[ view all ]

Trivia +

Early company locations & contact information:


The Learning Company

6493 Kaiser Drive

Fremont, California 94555


Toll Free Phone: 1-800-852-2255


The Learning Company

545 Middlefield Road

Menlo Park, California 94025


Toll Free Phone: 1-800-852-2255


The Learning Co.

4370 Alpine Road

Portola Valley, CA 94025


Most locations in the United States that originally belonged to The Learning Company, Inc. (1996-1999) were used by Mattel Interactive after their acquisition of TLC in May 1999 until October 2000. Telephone and Fax numbers remained the same. Any locations that were unique to either company are listed at the bottom.

The Learning Company, Inc. (Main headquarters) and TLC Properties, Inc. (subsidiary)

Mattel Interactive (Cambridge office)

One Athenaeum Street

Cambridge, MA 02142

Toll Free Phone: 1-800-227-5609

Telephone: 617-494-1200

Customer Service: 617-761-3000

Fax: 617-494-1219

The Learning Company, Inc. website:

Mattel Interactive websites: - -

Framingham office:

Internet Solutions Group

600 Worcester Road

Framingham, MA

Telephone: 508-416-1000

Fax: 508-626-8515

Fremont office:

6493 Kaiser Drive

Fremont, CA 94555

Telephone: 510-792-2101

Fax: 510-713-6072

Novato branch: (Mindscape)

88 Rowland Way

Novato, CA 94945

Telephone: 415-895-2000

Additional Novato location (Mattel Interactive only):

The Learning Company School

500 Redwood Blvd

Novato, CA 94947

Telephone: 415-382-4400


Note: This location was called Riverdeep in 2004

Riverdeep's Learning Company website:

Minneapolis branch (The Learning Company, Inc. only):

6160 Summit Drive North

Minneapolis, MN 55430

Telephone: 612-569-1500

Fax: 612-569-1551

Hiawatha office (Mattel Interactive only):

1 Martha's Way

Hiawatha, Iowa 52233

Telephone: 319-395-9626

Fax: 319-395-0217

Related Web Sites +


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