April 6, 2018
Disney Consumer Products will undergo significant organizational changes in order to prepare the company for the future goal of doubling its global licensing business to $50 billion in retail sales. The new corporate structure and new positions, which will take effect June 1, are designed to accommodate the growth of global licensing, which has expanded from $12 billion to $26 billion in retail sales over the past seven years, and to reintegrate the North American Disney Stores into DCP, following the recent acquisition of the chain from The Children’s Place.
“This is the most significant organizational evolution undertaken at Disney Consumer Products since 2000,” says Andrew Mooney, chairman, DCP. “Today, DCP is enjoying solid growth in every segment. I’m energized by this evolution, knowing it will get us to $50 billion [retail sales] and beyond.”
At the center of the new global licensing structure will be Jessi
“Since joining DCP in 2003, Dunne has transformed Disney Toys into a true toy company by emphasizing product quality and innovation, leveraging a greatly diversified property portfolio, and integrating the insights and skills of the consumer electronics team. In the process she has more than doubled our toys business,” says Mooney. “Since 2005, [Fielding] has systematically built RSM’s creative, sales and marketing teams into engines driving key account growth, while also overseeing DCP’s licensed and owned Disney Stores and online businesses. Jim’s roots are in vertical retail.”
Other new positions and promotions include:
• Jim Calhoun has been appointed to the newly created role of head of Disney Consumer Products North America.
• Pam Lifford will now lead both global apparel, accessories and footwear (AAF) and global home, bringing together her deep background in both businesses. In North America and China, AAF and home will merge, with teams aligning against consumer segments.
• Vince Klaseus will replace Jessi Dunne as head of global toys. Mark Coleman will lead both global stationery and the North American infant team, and J.D. Edwards will lead global food, health, and beauty.
According to Mooney, the retail sales and merchandising structure of franchise, creative, marketing, and sales has been realigned to meet the focused requirements of global licensing and regional needs for differentiated retail solutions.
• Luis Fernandez will continue to lead global creative.
• Mary Beech will lead franchise strategy for animated and live action franchises created by the Studio, as well as “legacy” franchises such as Princess and Fairies.
• Lisa Avent will manage the growing roster of television franchises, including Mickey and Pooh, which today are largely driven by TV content. Fernandez, Beech, and Avent will report to Dunne.
• Edward Kummer will lead online retail at DCP, reporting directly to Mooney.
Marvel Announces Expansive ‘Super Hero Squad’ Campaign Aimed at Kids
Marvel Entertainment is launching a major multi-media campaign for Marvel Super Hero Squad, an all-new Marvel brand serving to expand the traditional Marvel audience to a core 4-10 year-old audience. Based on the super-cute look of the Hasbro toy line of the same name, Marvel Super Hero Squad features child-like versions of Marvel’s famous heroes and villains.
Marvel Animation is currently in production on an animated “Super Hero Squad” television series that is expected to debut on-air in 2009, and Marvel is also planning a direct-to-DVD film for the brand. Additionally, Marvel Comics is now featuring Marvel Super Hero Squad comic strips within several of its all-ages books and will be introducing a dedicated
Marvel Super Hero Squad
comic book series in fall 2008.
Marvel has already secured deals with Hasbro as master toy partner, Disguise/Cesar for dress-up, and Mega Bloks for construction toys, and continues to seek deals with industry partners to develop additional merchandise.
Additionally, THQ Inc. has entered into an exclusive licensing agreement to create video games based on the Marvel Super Hero Squad brand. Pursuant to the multi-year agreement, THQ has obtained the exclusive, worldwide rights to publish content for all current and next-generation consoles, handheld systems, as well as Windows PC. The initial Marvel Super Hero Squad game is scheduled for release in fall 2009.
Simon Phillips, President, Marvel International and head of worldwide animation and video games, says, "Licensing of the Marvel Super Hero Squad brand is a priority for Marvel, as we see it as a great entry point for kids to experience our renowned characters. We are making a strong commitment to the brand across toys, television and other media and consumer product channels and developing Marvel Super Hero Squad as a video game will play an important role in the development of this brand."
Hornby Steams Into Corgi
The UK’s Hornby hobby toys, which includes Lima, Jouef and Rivarossi model railways, Scalextric slot car racing cars, Airfix models, and Humbrol paints among its brands, has bought the brand, tooling, and intellectual property rights of Corgi International for £7.5 million. The Corgi die-cast collector business includes licenses for Harry Potter, Nintendo, The Beatles, James Bond, Disney, Star Trek and Halo, plus the PopCo and Master Replicas brands. Hornby plans to strengthen the Corgi product range and improve the marketing and distribution support. As part of the acquisition, Hornby is also acquiring Bassett-Lowke, an ‘O’ gauge model railway brand.
Frank Martin, chief executive of Hornby, says, “Corgi is a fantastic brand and has a superb reputation worldwide. We intend to build on the brand’s super heritage and invest to build its premier position in the market. The strategic fit with our existing businesses could not be better. We are confident that we will grow the scale of the business rapidly and drive it forward. We will focus on product innovation, improving the distribution network and driving sales growth both in the UK and internationally.”
Bon-Ton Stores Sign Designer Victor Alfaro to Licensing Agreement
The Bon-Ton Stores Inc. has signed a license and design agreement with Victor Alfaro, an international designer, for an exclusive private brand collection, Victor by Victor Alfaro, which includes misses’, petite’s, and women’s apparel, as well as shoes, accessories, jewelry, and handbags. Ultimately, the brand may extend into men’s and home. Under the agreement, which was structured by ACI Licensing as the licensing agency on behalf of Victor Alfaro, the collection will be designed by Victor Alfaro. Bon-Ton will manage the sourcing, manufacturing, distribution and marketing of the collection.
Bud Bergren, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bon-Ton, says, “The distinctive styling, quality, and the value of this exclusive line strengthens Bon-Ton stores’ position as a destination for fashionable, exclusive apparel and accessories. The collection will have a broad appeal as it crosses a wide range of age groups and demographics.”
The Victor by Victor Alfaro line will launch in Sept. 2008, complete with a media and marketing program, fashion shows, and personal appearances by Victor Alfaro. The new line will be sold in 153 stores initially and expand to all stores in spring 2009.
Trump Moves Into Home Decor
The Trump Organization has announced a partnership with IMAX Corporation for an exclusive collection of home accessories and room decor. The Trump Home collection will include candleholders, vases, lidded boxes, centerpieces, wall decor items, and other decorative pieces. The collection will debut next month at the Dallas Total Home & Gift Market; and in July at the Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market; and the Las Vegas Furniture Market.
“The collection gives the consumer the ability to create a coordinated lifestyle, incorporating luxury and sophistication in their homes,” says Cathy Hoffman Glosser, executive vice president of global licensing for The Trump Organization.
Trump Home room decor was inspired by the magnificent mansions and properties owned by Donald J. Trump. The Westchester collection incorporates rich, classic elements to create grand appeal. The Central Park collection reflects a Manhattan lifestyle with metropolitan, modern, sophisticated design with a touch of art deco.
'The Price Is Right,' Other Game Show Brands Debut at Steve & Barry's
Retailer Steve & Barry’s and FremantleMedia Enterprises announce a new collaboration that will bring FME’s popular game show brands to the national apparel retail chain for the first direct-to-retail program based on these properties. The agreement includes the longest-running game show in television history and
selection as the “greatest game show of all time”, “The Price is Right,” as well as other classic game shows including “Press Your Luck”, “Password”, “Match Game,” and “Card Sharks."
The apparel line, which will incorporate signature phrases and iconography from the classic shows, is expected to roll-out into all stores nationwide in the fall of 2008 with short-sleeved t-shirts for men, women, and juniors. Potential categories include sweatpants/athletic pants, jerseys, jackets, windshirts, shorts, hats, underwear, performance bodywear, pajamas, onesies, and accessories.
“Our game show library has introduced TV watchers to some of the most memorable moments and catch phrases in pop culture,” says Nora Wong senior manager of consumer products for FremantleMedia Enterprises in North America. “This apparel line will tap into this pop culture relevance in a fun way.”
SG Footwear to Develop and Distribute Mongoose Branded Shoes
Bicycle supplier Pacific Cycle, a Dorel Industries Inc. company, awarded the Mongoose license to SG Footwear to design and distribute Mongoose branded shoes. The line will be distributed through mass-market retailers, as well as sporting goods retailers, discount footwear stores, and mid-tier retailers, and is scheduled for a spring 2009 launch.
SG Footwear is planning to develop eight athletic skate-style shoes, in addition to developing four funky high-walled vulcanized (canvas) styles. They will also offer several styles of sandals. The entire footwear collection will be available in both child and adult sizes.
High-End Barneys Shops Preview Target’s Rogan Gregory Fashions
Mass-market retailer Target has debuted its latest licensed fashion collection in a very surprising place—high-end specialty retailer Barneys in New York and Beverly Hills. Target’s newest Go International collection—a rotating line of clothes developed by high-end designers but sold at discount prices at Target for a limited time—was designed by Rogan Gregory.
The Gregory collection debuts at Target on May 18, but was sold in Barneys’ New York store May 9-11, then heads to the Beverly Hills Store May 16-18.
Fremantle to Represent ‘WordWorld’
FremantleMedia Enterprises, brand owner of “American Idol” and other top entertainment properties, has acquired exclusive licensing representation of the Emmy-nominated PBS Kids series “WordWorld” in North America and English-speaking countries. FME will leverage “WordWorld’s” powerful combination of educational and play value to build a licensing program across a variety of product categories that highlights the property’s unique focus on word play for pre-schoolers. The property is currently supported by a toy program with nationwide distribution at Target Stores and Target.com.
“It’s hard to believe that with the variety of awards, consumer recognition, and retail success already bestowed on “WordWorld” that this property has been on TV for less than a year,” says David Luner, SVP interactive and consumer products for FME in North America. “There is a palpable enthusiasm for the brand by both licensees and retailers, and we’re looking to leverage this momentum and the expertise of the FME infrastructure to approach the marketplace with a long-term brand strategy that is true to the unique WordWorld assets and attributes.”
WordWorld is now available, through FME, for licensing and co-branding opportunities in publishing, apparel and accessories, interactive, and more.
Paramount Signs Gorian for German Regions
Gorian Consumer Products has been signed by Paramount Licensing as licensing representative for Paramount’s properties in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Paramount Licensing licenses films distributed by Paramount Pictures, including films produced by Paramount Pictures, Paramount Vantage, Paramount Classics, MTV Films, Nickelodeon Movies, and DreamWorks Studios.
New and upcoming properties include
The Love Guru
The Spiderwick Chronicles
, and Gorian will also handle Paramount’s film library for the region.
Licenses offered include hard and soft good categories, games and toys, accessories, apparel, collectibles, stationery, packaged goods, publishing, trading cards, and souvenir programs, as well as branded theme parks and resorts, theme restaurants, live shows and stage plays, simulator rides, and related attractions.
THQ and DreamWorks Animation Team for Game of 2010 Film
THQ Inc. and DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. have entered into an exclusive licensing agreement to develop and publish video games based on the studio’s 2010 fall animated feature film. The film, acquired under the working title of
, is due in theaters on November 5, 2010. The new agreement grants THQ exclusive rights to publish interactive games based on the DreamWorks Animation property for all console and handheld systems, wireless devices and Windows PCs.
The DreamWorks Animation film is a satirical send-up of the superhero genre, built around the story of a super villain who must find a new motivation after accidentally killing his archrival, Uberman, in the opening scene of the movie.
“The DreamWorks Animation brand is among the best in animation and storytelling,” says Brian Farrell, President and CEO, THQ. “The superhero theme of the fall 2010 film project lends itself seamlessly to an interactive gaming adventure. DreamWorks’ creative vision and humor will add another dimension to our portfolio, which we believe will help further distinguish both THQ and DreamWorks as leaders in our respective entertainment categories.”
Paramount Brings ‘Galaxy Quest’ to Comics With IDW
Paramount licensing has teamed with comics publisher IDW Publishing to continue the story of the comedic sci-fi parody film
for the first time since the film’s 1999 debut.
This August, IDW will present the debut issue of an all-new Galaxy Quest miniseries,
Galaxy Quest: Global Warning
. The five-part series will pick up years after the end of the DreamWorks film. IDW is also the current comics licensee for Star Trek, which Galaxy Quest satirizes.
EA Sports Goes Freestyle
Electronic Arts Inc. launched EA Sports Freestyle, a new sub-brand aimed at a growing, more casual sports gaming audience. EA Sports Freestyle games, while based in sports, will be playful, inclusive, casual, and easy to pick up and play for kids and parents, women and men, and casual and hardcore sports fans of all ages.
“The launch of EA Sports Freestyle is an exciting milestone in the evolution of the EA Sports brand,” says Peter Moore, president, EA Sports. “EA Sports Freestyle will be a perfect complement to our core portfolio of games that our loyal fans are deeply passionate about, and will provide compelling opportunities for new audiences looking for a lighter gaming experience and an easier entry point into EA Sports.”
EA Sports Freestyle will be the home for innovative new intellectual properties from the EA Sports label, including three new games in development and slated for release in the next 12 months. The first title to launch under the new sub-brand will be
, an arcade-style boxing title set for release in September 2008 and the first new console IP from EA Sports since 2002.
Canson and Chorion Get Together for Eric Carle Deal
Canson, the world’s largest supplier of fine art papers, has partnered with Chorion to introduce a line of art and activity pads for children aged 3-9, based on the art of author and illustrator Eric Carle. Each pad in the line features well-known Eric Carle artwork on the cover—including The Very Hungry Caterpillar—with different assortments of papers inside.
Themed “The World of Eric Carle: What Do You See?” the line of pads is designed for specific age groups and includes a step-by-step “how to” section.
DIC Names Plus Licens to Take Strawberry Shortcake to Eastern Europe
DIC Entertainment has named Plus Licens as merchandising and publishing agent for Strawberry Shortcake in Central and Eastern Europe. Since American Greetings and DIC re-launched the property in 2003, it has generated more than $2.5 billion in worldwide retail sales and has more than 300 licensees around the world.
Peder Tamm, president of Plus Licens says, “Strawberry Shortcake represents a valuable strengthening of our Eastern European portfolio. The classic Strawberry Shortcake franchise was one of the biggest licensing innovations of its time, and the power of the re-launched brand combined with our fashion design experience and market position should provide the base for a brightening long-term future for Strawberry Shortcake in these territories.”
Universal and Sierra Entertainment Unwrap ‘Mummy’ Sequel Video Game
Sierra Entertainment, a division of Vivendi Games, announced the development of
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
, a video game based on this summer’s film from Universal Pictures. The game, which will mirror the fast-paced action and adventure depicted in the film, is being developed by Eurocom Studios for the Wii home video game console and PlayStation2 computer entertainment system and by A2M for Nintendo DS.
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
game was created through a licensing agreement with Universal Pictures Digital Platforms Group. The game is set to be in stores on Aug. 8, one week after the film’s debut in theaters.
ER Partners for Digital Multi-Platform Launches
Entertainment Rights has entered into digital multiplatform partnerships with YouTube, Joost and Babelgum. The launches will see Entertainment Rights provide all three platforms with a selection of retro programming from properties including He-Man, She-Ra, Trapdoor, Felix the Cat, Rocky & Bullwinkle, The Archies, Fat Albert and Casper the Friendly Ghost.
Laura Turner Laing, ER’s VP for global digital media and music, says, “These partnerships signal a significant step forward for the company delivering a multiplatform strategy that sees its brands successfully evolving outside of the linear TV platforms into the digital environment. Entertainment Rights wants to be where the audience is and online video enables the company to exploit its brands, which have strong retro appeal.”
The deal with YouTube is for a new free-to-view channel launch. Called Retro Heroes, it will feature short form (two- and five-minute) webisodes, selected from 1,000 hours of ER’s 3,600-hour strong catalogue.
The partnerships with interactive web video portals Babelgum and Joost also see the launch of Retro Heroes, which is available featuring long-form content on both platforms.
‘The Times’ to Serialize ‘Paddington Bear’
, one of the UK’s leading broadsheet newspapers, has made a serialization deal with publisher HarperCollins to reproduce an exclusive extract from
Paddington Here and Now
, Michael Bond’s first Paddington novel for 30 years. The book is being published in celebration of the bear’s 50th anniversary.
The deal also includes an interview with Michael Bond to run alongside the extract, and a promotion. A feature on Paddington’s illustrators has also been run in the newspaper. “We’re thrilled that Paddington has generated such a high level of interest from promotional and media partners in his 50th anniversary year,” says Nicholas Durbridge, chairman of Copyrights Group, now part of Chorion. “This deal will help raise the brand profile in a number of ways, including online and offline promotional activity, editorial support and, of course, the serialization itself.”
Alongside activity to feature in the main paper, The Times Online will post an extract from the audio edition, voiced by Stephen Fry, together with an audio book offer.
France 5 acquires free TV rights to 3-D Animated Preschool Series ‘Zigby’
French broadcaster France 5 has acquired free TV rights to the 3-D animated preschool series Zigbyfrom Germany’s EM.Entertainment for France, the French overseas departments and territories, Monaco, and Andorra.
“Zigby” is based on HarperCollins children’s book
Zigby, the Zebra Who Trots Into Trouble
The preschool program is produced by Australian-based Avrill Stark Entertainment, Zebra (I) Productions, and Big Animation in association with ABC (Australia) and Canadian station Treehouse. Completion is scheduled for September 2008.
Studio 100 and CBBC Join Forces
Belgian Studio100 Media and CBBC’s in-house production have signed a distribution partnership for the worldwide distribution rights (excluding North and South America and the UK) for CBBC’s 6-12 year old children’s programs and formats—“The Slammer,” “Trapped,” and “Beat the Boss.”
Toei Entertainment Names Merchandising Broker in Spain and Portugal
Anime company Toei Animation Co. Ltd. has appointed Spanish licensing leader Biplano as merchandising broker for its series “Dragon Ball” and “Saint Saiya.” Biplano will handle the properties for Spain and Portugal, encompassing all merchandising rights for the brands with the exception of the toy, video game, and publishing categories.
CBS and Fulais Council on ‘Survivor’ Torches
Fans of the long-running reality series “Survivor” will soon be able to set up tribal council in their own backyards with Survivor-branded outdoor torches. CBS Consumer Products has announced an agreement with Fulais Industrial for Survivor Island torches. The torch will be based on the actual torches seen at the end of every episode of “Survivor,” and feature a multi-view three-face design and a refillable see-through fuel canister. Available at retail in 2009, the torches will allow fans to re-create the island experience without all of the scheming and plotting.
Viz Signs Licenses for Sports Drinks, Home Textiles
Viz Media has recently granted licenses to Boston America for energy drinks for the anime series “Naruto” and throw blankets, throw pillows, and pillowcases for the anime series “Death Note” in the United States and Canada.
LIMA UK’s Spring Fling Breaks Records
Nickelodeon UK’s Clare Piggott has joined the panel of speakers at LIMA UK’s annual Licensing Essentials conference and Spring Fling networking event, organized in association with Brand Licensing Europe. A record number of people—120—signed up to attend the event, which includes seminar topics covering digital media in licensing, licensing without terrestrial TV, and a case study of the Dr. Who licensing program. The event takes place at Montague on the Gardens in London on May 15. Tickets are £330 + VAT (with discounts for LIMA members) for the whole day or £65 + VAT for the evening event alone. For more information, go towww.brandlicensingeurope.com/lima
‘Dangerous’ Comes to Television
The Dangerous Book for Boys
is set to hit television screens with a series from UK independent television producer Mentorn Media. “Dangerous Adventures for Boys,” the factual series based on the book, will debut on UK broadcaster Five later this year.
The six one-hour programs will feature celebrity fathers and their sons on expeditions that follow in the footsteps of their childhood heroes. Among the celebrities lined up to take part is Jim Moir, aka British comedian Vic Reeves, and his son Louis. The brand is represented in the UK by Rocket Licensing.
Helen Round has joined 4Kids Entertainment International as international marketing and communications manager. Round will manage 4Kids’ brands and agents in EMEA territories including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Benelux, Portugal, Turkey, Israel, the Middle East, and Africa. Previously she spent three years with MTV Networks International’s Emerging Markets sector as a marketing executive.Nicola Elliott, 4Kids senior licensing co-ordinator for the UK, will take on the responsibilities of Emily French Ullah, UK licensing manager, while Ullah is on maternity leave.
HIT Entertainment’s home entertainment business has been reorganized with Gavin Metcalfe promoted to senior director for international home entertainment. Metcalf supported by Luciana Bianchi, and the EMEA team will now be responsible for the Asia/Japan region and helping to drive future growth for this critically important region. Metcalf is responsible for all sales and business development in this wider region. Bianchi has also been promoted to the newly created position of licensing executive, international home entertainment.
Nickelodeon/MTVN Kids and Family Group has named Brian Offutt to the new position of senior vice president of creative operations. Offutt will be responsible for all of the operational, financial, technology and human resources processes for Nick’s Creative Resources and On-Air departments. He will also manage key vendor relationships and outside partnerships, and will manage the delivery of creative services to key departments throughout the Kids and Family Group including: programming; marketing; consumer products; digital; and public affairs.
The Toy Industry Association announced that Al Verrecchia of Hasbro has been unanimously elected chairman of TIA. Bryan Stockton, president, international of Mattel, was elected vice chairman, and Soren Torp Laursen, president, Lego Americas, was elected secretary/treasurer.
Newly elected members of the Board of Directors include industry veterans Jay Foreman, President, Play Along, George Irwin, chairman and CEO, Itoys and Etienne Veber, president and chief operating officer, Learning Resources. Each will serve a two-year term. Board members re-elected to serve a second two-year term are: Jim Engle, president, Little Kids, Inc.; Brian Goldner, chief operating officer, Hasbro; Robert Pasin, CEO, Radio Flyer; James Pressman, president, Pressman Toy and Anton Rabie, president and Co-CEO, Spin Master Ltd.
Scripps Networks has appointed Sergei Kuharsky as general manager, Scripps Networks Enterprises. Kuharsky will work closely with each of Scripps Networks’ lifestyle brands (including HGTV, Food Network, DIY Network, Fine Living Network, and country music network Great American Country) to expand the company’s initiatives in licensing, merchandising and publishing (books, DVDs, magazines, and video games).
Brand licensing agency Global Icons has promoted three staffers and hired several more. Global Icons promoted Bill McClinton to SVP of licensing, while he also serves as a partner with the company. Brian Mann, former licensing manager, was promoted to director of licensing, and will continue his duties to manage the hard lines categories. John Bickenbach, formerly financial analyst, was promoted to finance. New hires include Francesca Pascolini (executive director of marketing and retail development), Lori Skope (licensing manager), and Sarah Frumkin (product development manager).
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