Weekly E-news, Issue #255, March 11, 2008

Untitled DocumentKohl’s Kicks Off New Line with Avril LavigneThis July, clothing manufacturer Jerry Leigh and singer Avril Lavigne will launch Abbey Dawn, a new junior’s lifestyle brand to be sold exclusively at Kohl’s in the United S

April 6, 2018

Kohl’s Kicks Off New Line with Avril Lavigne


This July, clothing manufacturer Jerry Leigh and singer Avril Lavigne will launch Abbey Dawn, a new junior’s lifestyle brand to be sold exclusively at Kohl’s in the United States, with additional opportunities currently being explored internationally.

“Following the success of Gwen Stefani’s Harajuku Lovers, tokidoki, and our long-standing relationship with Disney, the partnership with the multi-talented Lavigne was a natural succession,” says Andrew Leigh, president of Jerry Leigh. “Our partnership with Avril Lavigne allows us to be true brand builders and we are proud to welcome Abbey Dawn into our family. We look forward to working with Kohl’s on this launch and believe it will be a retail success.”

Comprised of jewelry and apparel that mirror Lavigne’s rock style and energy, the collection will be updated every 60 days with new prints and pieces for juniors to further define their own individual styles. Additional categories will be added to

the Abbey Dawn line, including shoes and bags. The first collection will be sold in nearly 1,000 Kohl’s stores nationwide in time for back-to-school shopping and marks Lavigne’s first retail collaboration to date.

Cherokee Licensed in Spain to Grupo Eroski


Cherokee Inc. has signed an exclusive international license agreement for its Cherokee brand with Grupo Eroski, one of Spain’s largest retailers. The multiyear agreement covers a wide range of categories including men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing, footwear, accessories, and other categories. Eroski operates more than 1,100 supermarkets and hypermarkets throughout Spain and the Balearic and Canary Islands. Robert Margolis, CEO of Cherokee, says, “I’m very proud of the success the Cherokee brand has achieved worldwide. During the next six months, we expect the Cherokee brand will be launched in Brazil with Pao de Acucar; in Peru with Tottus; in Israel with Supersol; and in the Middle East with Al Hokair. Over the subsequent 12 months, we expect the Cherokee brand to be launched in India with Arvind; in selected Asian countries with Tesco, including China, South Korea, Thailand, and Malaysia; and in 2009 in Spain with Grupo Eroski.

He adds: “Although we cannot yet predict the magnitude of our upcoming launches of Cherokee in these larger countries, we have a lot of confidence in our retail partners and the vision we share for the Cherokee brand.”

Granada Ventures and Granada International to Merge


The UK’s ITV is planning to merge its licensing, merchandising and TV exploitation business into one with Granada Ventures and Granada International combining later this spring.

A spokeswoman for ITV told

License! Global

: “GI and GV are being merged, and we are proposing to create a new unified structure with a number of new roles covering the business areas previously covered by those two separate organisations. Many roles will transfer to the new organisation, although some will not. We have begun the process of consultation with affected staff.”

The unified business is to be led by ITV Worldwide president and managing director Peter Iacono, who recently joined ITV from Sony Pictures in the US, reporting to Dawn Airey, managing director of ITV Global Content.

The restructure includes the creation of a commercial brand director for ITV Worldwide, responsible for 360 degree exploitation of content across multiple platforms and territories, working ITV Productions, ITV Group Marketing and the ITV Network.

Rooms To Go Introduces Hannah Montana Furniture Collection


Furniture company Rooms To Go has partnered with Disney to launch a line of children's furniture inspired by Miley Cyrus' hit television character, pop star Hannah Montana. The Disney Hannah Montana furniture collection is now exclusively available at all Rooms To Go stores as well as online at roomstogo.com. The collection will be available at other regional specialty retailers during fall 2008.

Rooms To Go is currently offering three Hannah Montana bedroom collections—a sleigh/day bed, twin post bed and a brushed metal canopy bed—complete with super styling, secret storage, mirrors and crystal finials that blend with a fresh white finish.

Coordinating pieces include a three-piece vanity with full-length mirror, a desk and hutch as well as a mirrored door chest and jewelry chest. Five-drawer and eight-drawer dressers are also available in addition to a three-drawer nightstand and a unique entertainment console featuring a special drawer to neatly store a favorite gaming system.

"What child doesn't want to live like a superstar?" says Jeffrey Seaman, Chief Executive Officer for Rooms To Go. "This new furniture line evokes the lifestyle, function and fun brand essence of Hannah Montana along with the quality and longevity to keep the furniture a collectible in your home for years to come. Rooms To Go is a trusted name in furniture, and with that, we trust that kids will love this collection as much as we do."

Rooms To Go has maintained an exclusive partnership with Disney for three years and has produced furniture collections based on hit Disney properties such as Winnie the Pooh, Pirates of the Caribbean, Cars and Disney Princesses. A collection inspired by "High School Musical" is forthcoming.

Vera Wang Partners with Accessory Network Group for Lavender Label


Vera Wang has entered a three-year licensing agreement with Accessory Network Group LLC for the design, manufacture, and distribution of contemporary handbags and small leather goods for the Vera Wang Lavender Label Collection.

“In terms of fashion licensing, handbags have been a top priority for Lavender Label,” says Susan Sokol, president of Vera Wang Apparel. “As our Lavender Label business continues to grow, we have created a platform to license certain categories of product that will strongly complement the clothes. This partnership is particularly exciting since it is the first license we’ve done under the Lavender Label umbrella. We believe accessories are an extremely vital and necessary component to enhance the clothing and facilitate continued growth of the business.”

Retail pricing of the collection will range from $300 to $1,000, and distribution will follow that of Lavender Label apparel, including top-tier department and specialty stores.

The Vera Wang Lavender Label handbag collection will have a feel and tone similar to the Lavender Label apparel collection: whimsical, fun, youthful, and flirty. Since its launch in 2005, the label has succeeded in delivering a line of clothing that focuses on modern, feminine pieces with a retro edge.

The launch date for the new collection is set for spring 2009.

JAKKS Signs Toy License With Country Star Taylor Swift


JAKKS Pacific Inc. has signed a worldwide licensing agreement through Creative Artists Agency to develop and market toys and related products based on the award-winning and double-platinum American country music singer-songwriter, Taylor Swift.

Under the agreement, JAKKS plans to launch a line of fashion dolls wearing Swift's most memorable fashions, role-play toys (including Swift's signature crystal guitar), accessories, and craft and activity sets that encompass the world of the star. JAKKS expects to ship its Taylor Swift line to retail for Fall 2008.

"Tweens have developed a great connection with Taylor Swift, resulting in an aspirational following that not only enables girls to emulate this beautiful young country star, but encourages them to believe in themselves," says Jennifer Richmond, senior vice-president of licensing and media, JAKKS Pacific Inc. "We will work to ensure that the products embody the uniqueness and freshness of Taylor Swift."

"When I was a little girl, I dreamed of becoming a country music star and having my very own fashion doll line," says Swift. "Now it's come true! I can't wait to see little girls play with my doll and rock out with my crystal guitar!"

New Jeep Luggage to Launch at Travel Goods Show


Jeep Consumer Products signed Olivet International to develop a multi-tiered collection of Jeep branded luggage, with designer China Young on board to design the new line. The new Jeep luggage will be unveiled at the Travel Goods Show, March 15-17 at the San Diego Convention Center.

The Jeep luggage will feature a wide breadth of collections, all of which include high-quality pieces designed with the adventure-seeking Jeep consumer in mind. The entry-level collections will feature durable construction, in-line skate wheels, convenient storage compartments, and push-button locking handles. The high-end collection will include the same features as the mid-tier collection, plus 1680 Denier Polyester construction, push-button telescopic handles, Jeep molded wheels, signature Jeep zipper pulls, and MP3 player storage pockets.

“We’re very excited to have leading manufacturer Olivet, as well as designer China Young, on board to develop a new generation of Jeep luggage,” says Debra Joester, president and CEO of The Joester Loria Group, the exclusive worldwide licensing agent for the Jeep brand.

Apparel Lines Planned for Playstation Brand


Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. has awarded four new industry leaders in apparel and accessories licenses for the PlayStation brand and various game franchises, including God of War, Ratchet & Clank, Resistance Fall of Man, Heavenly Sword, and Little Big Planet. IV Gear Inc. will develop an extensive line of T-shirts, headwear, and other apparel for the specialty and mid-tier market. Fortune Fashions will also focus on the mid-tier market as well as mass retail channels for T-shirts and hoodies. Bioworld will produce headwear, bags, and accessories. MJC will round out the program with boys’ and young men’s boxers and loungewear.

John Leonhardt, president of Dimensional Branding Group, which is leading the DBG PlayStation licensing team, says, “With the addition of this diverse roster of creative and passionate apparel partners, this marks the initiation of PlayStation as one of the most innovative and cutting-edge licensing programs.”



Toon Disney to Air Marathon’s ‘Monster Buster Club’


Toon Disney has acquired broadcast rights to “Monster Buster Club” for its Jetix block. The series is the first fully CGI show produced by Marathon Media. “Monster Buster Club” is a France-Canada co-production between Marathon Media, TF1, Jetix Europe, and Canada’s YTV.

A comedy-action show for 4- to 10-year-olds, the series has already been sold to Super RTL in Germany, RTVE Spain, Slovenia's RTV, Ireland’s RTE, LNK in Lithuania, Denmark’s TV in Europe, to Radio Canada, and to the Arabic network MBC. New sales are underway in numerous other countries around the globe.



‘Blue Dragon’ Comes to Cartoon Network


Animation and licensing company VIZ Media LLC will launch the U.S. debut of the “Blue Dragon” animated series on Cartoon Network this spring.

“Blue Dragon” is based on the Xbox 360-exclusive videogame Blue Dragon, which features character designs by Akira Toriyama, the creator of the best-selling Dragon Ball property. The animated series debuted in Japan on TV Tokyo in April 2007 and is produced by Studio Pierrot, the studio behind the anime series “Naruto” and “Bleach,” also licensed by VIZ Media.

Galleon Strikes Deal to Take Chelsea to China


UK IP owner Galleon Holdings signed a co-production agreement with Guangdong TV Sports Channel and UK premier league football club Chelsea for a multiplatform reality soccer talent TV program, “Super Soccer Star.”

The show is scheduled for broadcast on the Guangdong TV Sports Channel in April 2008, generating revenue from sponsorship, advertising, mobile phone participation, live events, online activities, and branded merchandise.

“We believe that ‘Super Soccer Star’ could become a national show in China and can springboard into other territories in South East Asia,” says Galleon chief executive Stephen Green. “This is an entertainment format which appeals to grassroots football in China. We’re delighted to have the backing of a super brand like Chelsea, which will be working with us on the project to support the technical side and the promotion to grassroots soccer in the province.”

Guangdong TV Sports Channel broadcasts across the Guangdong province reaching some 50 million viewers. It is one of the broadcasting partners to the FA Premier League in China. 

Lenox Group Signs with IMC Licensing


Lenox Group Inc. is pursuing a strategic licensing plan and developing a portfolio of new brand-building licensed products. In a step toward that initiative, Lenox has appointed IMC Licensing to help develop strategies, and identify and develop licensing opportunities for the Lenox brand.

The Lenox brand is among the world’s most respected and trusted names in fine tableware and giftware and has successfully expanded its reach into quality casual tabletop, crystal stemware, stainless flatware, premium table linens and jewelry, and Lenox collectibles.

“We are very excited about the prospects of this endeavor,” says Marc Pfefferle, Lenox CEO. “This process will generate profitable new opportunities for an American icon brand well known for quality, design, and innovation. We expect to deliver to our customers the great attributes of the Lenox brand in many more product categories for their everyday living, home entertainment, and gift-giving occasions.”

Mark Ecko to Bring Showtime’s ‘Dexter’ to Video Games


Marc Ecko Entertainment has entered into a production agreement with Showtime Networks to design a videogame based on the Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning television series “Dexter,” about an ethical serial killer who only preys on killers. Marc Ecko Entertainment will develop the property for interactive media in close collaboration with Showtime Networks to guarantee its faithfulness to the spirit of the show.

“‘Dexter’ is the extremely rare TV show with enough layers of action and tension to translate perfectly into a compelling video game,” says Marc Fernandez, vice president of Marc Ecko Entertainment. “Our game designers, writers, and artists are going to give ‘Dexter’s’ morally complex world the kind of interactivity that gamers will love.”

The Dexter game is in pre-production and Showtime Networks and Marc Ecko Entertainment are in talks with a handful of developers to bring the game to life.

Toms Launches Retail Campaign with Heart—and Sole


Shoe Studio Group has secured an exclusive one-season licensing deal with U.S. ethical footwear label Toms. The company launched Toms last week at its department in Selfridges on London's Oxford Street and Brown Thomas in Dublin. It will roll out the brand to all of its stores and its House of Fraser concessions on March 21.

Toms was set up in 2006 by U.S. entrepreneur and philanthropist Blake Mycoskie to shod the feet of poor children across the world. Toms promises to donate one pair of shoes to needy children for every pair sold at retail.

The shoes are based on Argentinean-style espadrilles called Alpargatas and come in a range of bright colors and patterns.

Mycoskie has already donated and delivered 50,000 pairs of shoes to children in Africa and hopes to be able to donate a further 100,000 pairs to Ethiopian children this summer.

Marks & Spencer Goes on Balkan Adventure


UK and international retailer Marks and Spencer Group is set to open 50 more Balkan stores after it acquired 50 percent of Marks & Spencer Marinopoulos—which operates 38 Marks & Spencer stores in Greece, a number of Balkan states including Romania and Bulgaria, and Switzerland—for 50 million euros.

Marks & Spencer, which plans to grow its international business to 15-20 percent of Group revenues within the next five years, has worked with The Marinopoulos Group for 30 years. The privately owned Greek company has exclusive rights to operate Marks & Spencer stores in Greece, Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, and Switzerland under a franchise agreement.

It also has rights to operate in Austria, Bosnia, and Herzegovina, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Albania, and Montenegro where, currently, there are no Marks & Spencer stores.

Marks & Spencer director of international business Carl Leaver says, “We have an exciting opportunity to open many more Marks & Spencer stores in Greece and the Balkans and our joint venture with Marinopoulos will mean we can really put Marks & Spencer on the map in this part of the world. In Greece, we already have a solid platform to build on and there is a growing demand for great quality, good value Marks & Spencer products in markets like Romania and Bulgaria. We have worked with Marinopoulos for over 30 years and their retail expertise and local knowledge make them the ideal partner for us.”

Marinopoulos Brothers also has joint ventures with Carrefour, Starbucks, Sephora (a division of LVMH), Fnac (a division of PPR) and Grand Optical.

Flame TV Appoints Lazarus Media as Licensing Agent


Lazarus Media has been appointed as licensing agent for Flame Television’s BBC1 series, “Don’t Get Done, Get Dom.” The third series of the consumer champion show airs on BBC1 this summer.

Lazarus Media will look to strike home video and book publishing deals and will also explore other licensing and promotional opportunities.

Steve Lazarus, managing director of Lazarus Media, said: “This is a highly entertaining series and we are looking forward to taking it to market. The last series regularly achieved one million plus viewers a day and, combined with the fact that this is a returning BBC1 series, it means that it is a very strong proposition.”

Gromit Is the New ‘Good Citizen’ of Crufts


Aardman Animation’s character Gromit, half of the Oscar-winning duo Wallace and Gromit, is to become the new face of the Kennel Club’s Good Citizen Dog Scheme—the largest dog-training program in the UK.

To complement the relationship, Aardman will introduce a line of co-branded merchandise. Mugs, fridge magnets, key rings, and, polo shirts and fleeces will be sold at this year’s Crufts dog show. More products, including co-branded dog accessories, will be available later this year.

A Matter of Loaf and Death

(formerly “Trouble At’ Mill”), a half-hour TV special for BBC One, is the new Wallace and Gromit adventure currently in production at Aardmans’s Bristol studios. Delivery is expected in autumn 2008.

Wild Republic Signs on for ‘Mama Mirabelle’s’ Toys


Wild Republic has signed a global licensing agreement with National Geographic as a toy product partner for plush, puzzles, and figurines based on the new PBS Kids show, “Mama Mirabelle’s Home Movies.”

The main products from Wild Republic for “Mama Mirabelle’s Home Movies” are plush versions of the co-stars of the series—Max the elephant, Karla the zebra, Bo the cheetah, and Mama Mirabelle herself. The products build upon the positioning of the series, which looks at the natural world from a preschooler’s perspective. The plush will be distributed by National Geographic Kids Entertainment in both domestic and international markets.

A co-production of National Geographic Kids Entertainment, BBC/CBeebies, and King Rollo Films, “Mama Mirabelle’s Home Movies” represents the first time National Geographic Kids Entertainment and PBS Kids have teamed up to bring a children’s show to television.

Inno-Wear Signs Apparel License for ‘Gears of War 2’


European textile and accessory company Inno-Wear A.G signed an exclusive licensing agreement with Epic Games for its highly anticipated upcoming Xbox 360 game

Gears of War 2

, scheduled to ship in November. The title joins the Inno-Wear’s catalog of video game licenses, which encompasses more than 50 brands, including Xbox, Resident Evil, Tomb Raider, Mario, Sonic the Hedgehog, and more.

"We are delighted that Epic has entrusted us with Gears of Wars, reinforcing our position as the leader in gaming licensing,” says Aurelien Palasse, development director at Inno-Wear. “Our challenge is now to develop unique end-of-the-year offers for our European distributors."

Kidrobot Unveils Collectibles for Adult Swim


This April, collectible and apparel company Kidrobot will roll out an all-new line of 3-inch, blind-box collectible vinyl toys based on the characters of Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim programming block. The line will feature randomly packed figures from the adult-targeted network’s shows such as “Aqua Teen Hunger Force,” “The Venture Bros.,” “Robot Chicken,” “Metalocalypse,” and more. The series will be available at select retailers in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Latin America.

This is the first time merchandise has been produced for several of the shows represented, including  “The Venture Bros.,” “Robot Chicken,” and “Frisky Dingo.”

Imira Launches ‘Tangerine & Cow’ at MIPTV 2008


Spanish youth programming production and distribution company Imira Entertainment is taking animated comedy “Tangerine & Cow” to MIPTV, following its acquisition of worldwide distribution rights from Normaal Animation (except for French-speaking Europe, Netherlands, Greece, Hungary and Finland).

The 2D series follows a zany family and is a co-production between Normaal and France 3. It is based on the comic book

Chico Mandarine,

written by Jacques Azam and published by éditions Milan.

Also on Imira’s MIPTV agenda are the Olympic-themed “Go! Go! Pig” from Italian producer Maga Animation, and “Rat-Man,” an animated comedy from RAI and Italian production company Stranemani—both new additions to Imira’s third-party distribution slate.

Jetix Launches Magazine In Turkey


Jetix Consumer Products, Jetix Europe’s licensing division, is launching the

Jetix Magazine

in Turkey this month, produced under license by Dogan Egmont Publishing.

The content will include news, interviews, reviews, competitions, music and sport. The first issue will feature Jetix’s gaming star, Sonic X and a free Jetix logo heat press transfer. Subsequent issues will feature creative activities, practical jokes, cool science experiments and multiple competitions to win PS2s, games, toys, DVDs and books.

Maciej Bral, managing director for Jetix in CEE and Middle East, says, “

Jetix Magazine

is an effective brand extension for us and an excellent way to reach our target audience beyond our Jetix and Jetix Play channels—both of which are already two of Turkish kids’ top channels.”

HIT Takes Up With iTunes


HIT Entertainment has signed a deal with iTunes in the UK for over 20 hours of episode downloads from shows including “Barney,” “Bob the Builder,” “Thomas & Friends,” and “Captain Pugwash.”

Set to launch in April, the HIT channel will offer half-hour episodes to download at £1.89 each and will allow users to watch the shows on a PC or Mac, video-enabled iPod, iPhone, or Apple TV.

Ryan Tunstall, IT and operations director HIT Entertainment, says, “The new HIT TV shows on iTunes present a great opportunity to further extend the reach and distribution of our programming to young fans across the UK. iTunes will sit alongside existing deals with online outlets such as YouTube in the UK to bring our content to more viewers.”

HIT plans to further expand its offering on digital channels to include other properties in its portfolio throughout the year.

The 99 Gains French Licensing Representation


Teshkeel Media Group KSC has named Paris Arabesques as its new licensing representative in France and French-speaking Belgium and Switzerland. In addition, Paris Arabesques will handle non-exclusive merchandising representation in Morocco, Tunisia, and Algeria. Paris Arabesques will oversee all sales, retail, merchandising, and marketing of the comic book-based brand The 99 in French Europe and Northern Africa.

Paris Arabesques will look to build relationships with French licensees and cultivate new categories and products across various territories. Paris Arabesques will work closely with licensees on product development, positioning, and rollout strategies for various different merchandise categories. Paris Arabesques will also work with local retailers to ensure successful promotion of The 99 franchise.



New Streetwear Line Launches With Voltron Apparel


Devil’s Due, a Chicago-based comic book publisher, is collaborating with hip hop artist Malik "WordSmyth" Yusef on a new line of pop culture-based streetwear called Sat-Morn Apparel. Sat-Morn will launch its first products this April in boutiques worldwide. The company's first release will be a line of Voltron: Defender of the Universe T-shirts, licensed by World Event Productions. Each design is limited to 1,000 pieces and packaged in a vintage tin lunch box. Future releases will feature a mix of licensed properties and original designs.

Yusef is already known in the streetwear community for the MCM brand, and is aggressively leveraging existing relationships for partnerships between Sat-Morn and his contacts in the fashion world.

ToyQuest Gains License to Make Fisher-Price Backyard Toys


Fisher-Price has entered into a new licensing collaboration with ToyQuest to produce a brand-new Fisher-Price backyard play program for toddlers and preschoolers. The collection will include pools, backyard play, sand toys, and constant-air inflatables, featuring colorful designs and an animal theme.

ToyQuest will unveil the collection in spring 2008, beginning with the Hoppy Frog Spray Pool, Rainbow Shade Pool, Squirt Friend Animal Sprayers, Deluxe Sprinkle ‘N Splash Play Mat, Froggy Fun Sprinkler, Brontosaurus Dino Digger, Soak ‘N Splash Animal Park, Squirt ‘N Sprinkle Fire Truck, and the Mega Bouncer.

“With more than 10 years of experience in the toy category, ToyQuest has a history of providing quality products that allow children to build on their natural creativity,” says Mark Weppner, director of licensing, Fisher-Price. “Our partnership with ToyQuest extends Fisher-Price’s presence into the outdoor and water-play category, providing exceptional backyard play experiences for little ones.”

The Fisher-Price backyard play program will be available at Toys “R” Us and Babies “R” Us.

Game Predicts Profits Ahead of Indications


Game, the European retailer of PC and video games products, has upped its predicted profit before tax to $149 million for the year ending Jan. 31, 2008, and announced that like-for-like sales for the current year will run at between 5 percent and 10 percent. The profit figure is ahead of previous indications of $146 million and up from $59 million in 2007.

The like-for-like prediction results from what Game said was a “strong pipeline of innovative software with some highly anticipated products scheduled for European release in the next few months.”

The indications came at the same time as the company’s acquisition of Gamestation was given unconditional clearance by the UK’s Competition Commission.

GoochiCoo Meets Izziwotnot


British nursery product manufacturer Izziwotnot has launched a range of licensed embroidered linens, window dressings, and accessories featuring the GoochiCoo range of cartoon characters.

Jane Jackson, director of Izziwotnot, says, “The GoochiCoo brand has really gained momentum over the last 12 months and has gone from strength to strength in the baby products sector across varying product groups. It’s great to have been involved from the start and bring our strengths in the nursery interiors market to the table.”

MHS To Introduce New Properties at Surtex, Licensing International


MHS Licensing will be debuting five new properties—including James Meger, Victoria Schultz, Ann Tristani, and The Adventures of Molly & Macy—at Surtex and Licensing Show.

Collectively, MHS Licensing’s artists generate nearly $100 million in annual sales through their licensee partners. At Surtex and Licensing International, MHS Licensing will also be introducing new images from their artists, including the Hautman Brothers, Judy Buswell, Kathy Hatch, Anne Ormsby, Luis Fitch, Robin Roderick, Ron King, Amy Hautman, H. Hargrove, Bo Newell, Cranston Collection, Darrell Bush, Ursula Dodge, as well as the brands Chester, Smirk, Karim Rashid, Tiny Tillia, and The Girls.

Tommy Hilfiger to Take Footwear License In-House


Tommy Hilfiger Group and Collective Brands Inc. have agreed to end an exclusive license deal for men's and women's footwear between Hilfiger and Collective Brands' Stride Rite unit.

Hilfiger will bring its adult footwear business in-house, but Stride Rite will continue to be a licensee for the Tommy Hilfiger Kids footwear line through Dec. 31, 2009.

Creata to Manage Licensing for Paul Frank Industries


Paul Frank Industries has granted exclusive global licensing rights of the Paul Frank brand-to-brand management company Creata. After 10 years in business, Paul Frank Industries is now looking for growth into new product categories. Through licensing partnerships and creative alliances, Paul Frank industries and Creata are looking to extend the reach of the Paul Frank brand and related icons worldwide.

Paul Frank and Creata will immediately roll out licensing partnerships in categories that Paul Frank Industries currently services. Creata will then be responsible for seeking licensing opportunities in diversified brand extensions. The design and marketing team at Paul Frank will continue to focus on brand development, with support from the global team at Creata. Paul Frank Industries will maintain operation of the Paul Frank retail stores with plans for ongoing roll out of additional global locations. Paul Frank’s boutique, specialty chain, and major department store distribution model will remain the same.

Wal-Mart Introduces Canopy Brand


Wal-Mart last week introduced the new Canopy home furnishings brand. Several products from the Canopy line are appearing in select stores nationwide now and also online now at

walmart.com/canopy

. The Canopy launch will continue with an expansion of product in additional home categories, in stores and online, in summer and fall 2008.

The new home furnishings line will extend across a multitude of home categories, including bedding, furniture, bath accessories, dinnerware, and decor.

Hilco Named Agency for Newly Acquired Bombay Brands


Hilco Consumer Capital Corp. has hired the New York-based branding firm Graj+Gustavsen to reposition and package the newly acquired Bombay Brands LLC. Hilco’s plan for The Bombay Brand aims to generate new products through licensed wholesalers and bring them to market through strategic retail and brand franchisee partners.

Bombay Brands LLC president John Collins says, "We are thrilled to be partnering with Graj+Gustavsen on the creation of a new brand essence and strategy for Bombay Brands LLC. We will be looking to G+G to lead us in bringing a fresh look and feel to the Bombay Brand by restoring the history and quality the market wants."

Candle-Lite to Produce Laura Ashley Candles


Laura Ashley Inc. has awarded licensing rights to Candle-Lite, a division of Lancaster Colony Corp., to manufacture candles and candle accessories.

The collection is scheduled to launch at the 2008 International Home and Housewares Show in Chicago, which runs from Sun., March 16 through Tues., March 18.

“This is a strategic move on Laura Ashley’s part to further expand our product line,” says Penne Cairoli, general manager of Laura Ashley. “Globally, our brand has a loyal following and we look forward to offering customers another reason to choose Laura Ashley.”

Containing essential oils in a vegetable wax blend, the Laura Ashley candle and candle accessory collection combines a classic color palette with fresh fragrances.

“Our Laura Ashley product offerings are closely aligned with consumer insights relative to product type, style, color, and fragrance. We are excited to bring our expertise in the candle industry to such a well-known brand,” says Michael Smith, senior marketing manager of Candle-Lite.



Decode Premieres New Programs at MIPTV


Kids and family entertainment company Decode Enterprises, the distribution subsidiary of DHX Media Ltd., is bringing a range of brand-new series to this year’s MIPTV, including its first acquired factual entertainment show. Its sales slate includes programming from DHX production subsidiaries Decode Entertainment, Halifax Film, and Studio B as well as acquired content from Turner Broadcasting, Marblemedia, and a Decode co-venture with Out of the Blue Enterprises.

Animated preschool-targeted “Mighty Jungle” and “Animal Mechanicals” from Halifax Film make their MIPTV debut, along with “Kid vs. Kat” from Studio B, the Vancouver animation studio recently acquired by Decode parent DHX Media. “Adrenaline Project,” a factual entertainment series from Toronto’s Marblemedia, is also new for the international market. These series line up alongside “Super Why,” from Decode Entertainment and Out of the Blue Enterprises, live-action “My Spy Family” from Turner Broadcasting, and season two of the Decode Entertainment-produced hit live action drama “The Latest Buzz.”

EXECUTIVE MOVES


HIT Entertainment’s CEO Bruce Steinberg has resigned, and the company has appointed Jeffrey D. Dunn as his successor. Dunn is the former chief operating officer for Nickelodeon Networks and the former president of Nickelodeon Film and Enterprises at MTV Networks. He will be based in the United States but, as the business will continue to operate from its two major offices in London and New York, will divide his time equally.

London-based Copyright Promotions Sport (CPS) appointed Gary Jacobson commercial manager. Jacobson, who took the position in January, is working across CPS’s portfolio, with clients including The FA, RFU, St. Andrews Links, Wembley Stadium, and ECB, to name a few.

4Kids Entertainment Inc. is expanding its retail team with the appointments of industry veterans Joe Marziotto and Glenn Pecoraro as vice presidents, retail development. Marziotto and Pecoraro will spearhead the expansion and development of 4Kids’ retail programs across all channels for key properties, including Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Cabbage Patch Kids, Monster Jam, Chaotic, Dinosaur King, and more. Additionally, they will be responsible for developing direct-to-retail programs and retail marketing and promotional programs to drive brand awareness and maximize revenues.


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