Dragon Ball Posts Significant License Growth Highlighting The Franchises’ Unrivaled Popularity

Multigenerational mainstream fandom drives growth across all categories.

License Global

May 23, 2024

3 Min Read
100THIEVES x DragonBallZ T-shirt, Toei Animation
100THIEVES x DragonBallZ T-shirtToei Animation

Studio and anime creator, Toei Animation, together with its North American agent Crunchyroll, has announced their most recent licensing gains for the Dragon Ball franchise. Encompassing the previous 12 months since last year’s Licensing Expo, the 2023-2024 Dragon Ball franchise report summarizes the success of their joint licensing efforts, including highlighting a selection of key licensee product collaborations and a detailed selection of new license agreements for both the episodic series and movie properties. 

During the last 12 months, Toei Animation and Crunchyroll executed a total of 45 agreements for the “Dragon Ball,” “Dragon Ball Z” and “Dragon Ball Super” properties – consisting of 18 new licenses and 27 license renewals. These new license agreements will excite Dragon Ball fans across an array of products including apparel, footwear, plushies, tech accessories, food as well as location-based entertainment — many of which have or will be launched in 2024. 

“‘Dragon Ball’ fans have a truly unquenchable demand for branded goods – as illustrated by the breadth and depth our licensed product categories,” says Masayuki Endo, president, Toei Animation. “We’re thrilled that these new agreements will bring ‘Dragon Ball’s’ beloved characters and stories to fans – not only in North America but also around the world. The dedication and commitment of both our team and our partners has made this possible. And together, we’ll continue to bring new and exciting products to ‘Dragon Ball’ fans of every age.” 

Dragon Ball is an unequaled pop culture phenomenon that boasts a mainstream multi-generational audience of anime fans. Based on the original “Dragon Ball” manga created by Akira Toriyama over 37 years ago, the Dragon Ball anime franchise now spans five episodic series (“Dragon Ball,” “Dragon Ball Z,” “Dragon Ball GT,” “Dragon Ball Z Kai” and “Dragon Ball Super”), 21 feature films, numerous mobile and video games, multiple trading card games and, together with agreements detailed below, a constantly growing catalog of licensed apparel, footwear, accessories, toys and games, video games, sporting goods, gifts and novelties, household goods, publishing, food and beverage, location-based entertainment and more. 

Of particular interest to fans were a trio of new license agreements spanning apparel, accessories, food and location-based entertainment that resulted in notable collaborations during the last 12 months. Last August, the gamer generation lifestyle brand 100 Thieves launched its 100 Thieves x “Dragon Ball Z” and Higround x “Dragon Ball Z” offering complimentary collections of apparel and keyboards, respectively. Then in February in the food category, General Mills released the initial drop of its limited-time REESE’s PUFFS x “Dragon Ball Z” series of collectible cereal boxes. And finally, starting this month, Kura Sushi USA launched its Dragon Ball Super x Kura Bikkura Pon collaboration, a two-month-long location-based entertainment experience at all U.S. Kura Sushi locations featuring special prizes, merchandise, in-store giveaways and themed space décor. 

The list of new licensing agreements secured by Toei Animation and Crunchyroll includes:  

  • 100 Thieves: The premium lifestyle brand of the gaming generation for “Dragon Ball Z” apparel and keyboard collections under its 100 Thieves and Higround brands.  

  • Darc Sports: A brand/club/family that represents “never giving up “as its message while its core being is rooted in fitness/bodybuilding. Darc Sport Wolves presents a “Dragon Ball Z” collection. 

  • General Mills: Multination manufacturer of branded consumer foods for a collection of Reese’s Puffs cereal boxes featuring different “Dragon Ball Z” character.  

  • Hallmark Cards: A leading innovator in the world of greeting cards, gift packaging, gifts and ornaments for a collection of “Dragon Ball Z” Hallmark Keepsake Ornaments, Funko POP! ornaments and more. 

  • Jazwares: One of the world’s leading toy companies will collaborate on a collection of Squishmallows plush based on popular “Dragon Ball Z” characters. 

  • Kura Sushi USA: Innovative and tech interactive Japanese restaurant chain for a limited-time “Dragon Ball Super” Bikkura Pon collaboration including prizes, merchandise, in-store giveaways and themed space décor. 

  • TeeTurtle: A company that creates fun and casual fun and unique T-shirts, plushies and accessories, including an upcoming collection of “Dragon Ball” and “Dragon Ball Z” characters. 

About the Author(s)

License Global

License Global is the leading news source for the brand licensing industry, delivering award-winning editorial content including news, trends, analysis, and special reports about the global consumer product and retail marketplace.

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