Cartoon Network is an American basic cable and satellite television channel that is owned by the Turner Broadcasting Systemdivision of Time Warner. The channel airs primarily animated programming, ranging from action to animated comedy. It was founded by Betty Cohen and launched on October 1, 1992.
It is primarily aimed at children and teenagers between the ages of 7–16, and also targets older teens and adults with mature content during its late night daypart Adult Swim, which is treated as a separate entity for promotional purposes and as a separate channel by Nielsen for ratings purposes. A Spanish language audio track for select programs is accessible via SAP; some cable and satellite companies offer the Spanish feed as a separate channel.
As of February 2015, Cartoon Network is available to approximately 96.4 million pay television households (82.8% of households with television) in the United States.
On August 4, 1986, Ted Turner's Turner Broadcasting System acquired Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/United Artists from Kirk Kerkorian; due to concerns over the debt load of his companies, on October 17, 1986, Turner was forced to sell MGM back to Kerkorian after approximately only 74 days of ownership. However, Turner kept much of MGM's film and television library made prior to May 1986 (as well as some of the United Artists library) and formed Turner Entertainment.
On October 3, 1988, its cable channel Turner Network Television was launched and had gained an audience with its extensive film library. At this time, Turner's animation library included the MGM cartoon library, the pre-1948 color Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies shorts, the Harman-Ising Merrie Melodies shorts (except Lady, Play Your Mandolin!), and the Fleischer Studios/Famous Studios Popeye cartoons.
In 1991, Turner Entertainment purchased animation studio Hanna-Barbera Productions for US$320 million.