The agreement is effective immediately, and marks a move from a traditional agreement to master licensee representation for VIMN in Russia. Plus Licens will represent Nickelodeon in the Central & Eastern Europe and Nordic markets.
The appointment follows the recent acquisition of “Kikoriki,” the animated property known in Russia as “Smeshariki,” across Central and Eastern Europe (excluding Russia), the Middle East, Africa and the Asia Pacific region (excluding Greater China).
Riki Group will broker licensing deals for all VIMN programs in RCIS, including Nickelodeon properties SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer, iCarly and Avatar, as well as the MTV logo and adult brands, including South Park, Beavis and Butthead and Jackass.
“We’re thrilled to announce our new master licensing partnership with Riki Group for our Nickelodeon and MTV adult brand properties in the Russia and CIS market,” says Michael Connolly, senior vice president, consumer products, VIMN. “This is a further step in our already strong partnership and opens the door to further possibilities for collaboration across our businesses. Our RCIS business has expanded dramatically in 2011 and we are pleased to bring Russian fans even more opportunities to connect with SpongeBob, Dora and all of their favorite Nickelodeon characters.”
“We are excited to be working with VIMN and look forward to applying everything we have learned while growing our Kikoriki brand to the globally recognized Nickelodeon brand and the tremendous slate of Nickelodeon and MTV properties we will be managing,” says Ilya Popov, chief executive officer and executive producer, The Riki Group. “The Riki Group’s expertise in the Russian marketplace, together with VIMN’s vast global experience, will make for an extremely successful partnership in the licensing arena.”