Hearst Flips Mega Mattress Deal


Direct-to-consumer bedding and furniture holdings company Idle Group has announced the launch of a multiyear licensing partnership with Hearst Magazines. The deal brings together Idle’s North American and global operating, supply and marketing platform with Hearst Magazines’ audience of consumers, brands and broad print and digital media platforms.

“Hearst Magazines’ portfolio includes the leading lifestyle brands that hundreds of millions of consumers know, trust and love," says Steve Ross, global chief licensing officer and brand development head, Hearst Magazines. "From content to commerce and product development, our reputation is built on a commitment to quality and consumer confidence, which makes this collaboration a natural fit, deepening connections forged with our loyal audience of readers and brand enthusiasts.”

Idle Group, led by e-commerce and mattress veteran Craig Schmeizer, who also co-founded Nectar and the Resident Home family of brands, is scheduled to launch the first mattress brand lines in Q4 2020 with Country Living, followed by House Beautiful, Men’s Health and Women’s Health in early 2021.

The partnership offers Hearst Magazines’ audience premium sleep products, with each brand bringing its marketing support to one of the fastest- growing consumer product segments.

“This partnership proves the mattress space is anything but sleepy, and we believe introducing the strength of Hearst Magazines iconic and authoritative brands to this category cuts through the confusing array of messages consumers need to process from so many ‘beds-in-a-box' and transient pop-up brands," says Schmeizer, chief executive officer and founder, Idle Group. "We are honored to be selected as Hearst Magazines’ partner. It is clear that channeling the deep brand equity brought by titles such as Country Living, House Beautiful, Men’s Health and Women’s Health and others can be transformative within both e-ecommerce and traditional distribution contexts."

The new mattresses will be available direct-to-consumer on dedicated websites for each new mattress brand, offering a host of options suited for all budgets and sleep preferences.

5 Things Brand Licensees Should Do To Prepare for the NFL Season


If 2020 has taught us anything, it is that adaptability, education and safety are paramount. With many uncertainties in front of us, how can licensees navigate – and benefit from – opportunities working with NFL players?

Just as players plan for unknown factors in the new season, licensees can benefit by preparing for everything related to developing and marketing licensed player product, receiving the best support available to implement plans, and engaging with the NFL Players Association for expert assistance.

Every year, the NFLPA, via its marketing and licensing arm, NFL Players Inc. offers a range of marketing resources, athlete services and data research to assist licensing partners in getting a jump on planning and taking advantage of opportunities that arise throughout the year.

Here is your 2020 NFLPA Partner NFL Season Checklist:

  1. PARTNER WITH PLAYERS. Download the NFLPA Player Marketing Playbook and learn how your company can add NFL players into marketing campaigns to drive fan engagement, increase licensed product sales and prove ROI.
  2. STAY AHEAD. We can’t predict the next Patrick Mahomes, but we can pinpoint players’ excellence on the field and in retail. The Top 50 Player Sales lists report sales of all officially licensed player-identified merchandise on a quarterly basis from 80+ NFLPA licensees. The annual Rising Stars list helps partners think creatively about “who’s next?” as it identifies rookies and veterans who are poised to break into the Top 50 in licensed merchandise.
  3. GO SOCIAL. NFL players are among the most influential voices and leaders in fan engagement on social media. The new NFLPA Influencer Hot List, powered by Opendorse, analyzes social media activity of active players and ranks the top 10 most influential and marketable for brands seeking deeper engagement through social content.
  4. TAP PLAYER PASSIONS. Players are more than just football stars. The NFLPA #AthleteAnd initiative highlights activities that characterize player personas and passions off the field – from social justice reform and community impact to entrepreueurship. Through the #AthleteAnd portal, partners can research players who fit their products and campaigns.
  5. TEAM UP. Partner with the NFLPA’s team of experts to strategize how to employ important partner resources into product development, marketing and promotions. For information about obtaining an NFLPA license, contact Cary Grossart at cary.grossart@nflpa.com or (202) 572-7477.

Please visit us at nflpa.com/partners/licensing.

Perth Mint Flips Over New James Bond Coin


As the world anticipates the November release of James Bond’s latest adventure, “No Time to Die,” the Perth Mint has unveiled its latest coin paying homage to the action hero.

The latest coin from their 007 James Bond series is a 1oz silver proof coin with a worldwide mintage of just 5,000, enveloped in branded presentation packaging.

The coin will be released in September.

NECA Unleashes Universal Monsters Masks


NECA and Universal Brand Development have teamed up to bring the Universal Monsters to customers with a set of six limited-edition, latex display masks.

Each mask – sculpted by Mortar Heads the art of Mark Enright – is an homage to the Universal mini-monster figure collection from Remco, with packaging that follows the look of the classic Remco blister card fronts.

The series of limited-edition display masks include:

  • “Creature from the Black Lagoon;”
  • “The Phantom of the Opera;”
  • “Frankenstein;” and
  • “The Mummy.”

Subscribers to the first four masks in the series will receive “The Wolfman” and “Dracula” bonus masks for free. The special-edition masks will not be sold separately.

The Universal Monsters Masks will begin shipping this September, with each subsequent mask flying, swimming or slowly walking towards customers on a monthly basis.