Published: October 18, 2017

Real Deal

Compiled by: Jennifer Lynch

Tween Retailer Justice Taps Joester Loria Group as Brand Licensing Agent

Justice, the specialty tween retailer, tapped The Joester Loria Group (JLG) to execute a brand extension program that will provide access to a range of branded lifestyle categories to tween girls at select third party retailers.

Through inclusive marketing campaigns that serve girls every day, digital ambassadors, in-store and online events, philanthropic activities, and fashions, Justice has established a bond with girls and parents in more than 6 million households. The chain of 900 North American stores currently earns more than $1 billion in annual sales.

The JLG will expand the footprint of the Justice brand and the reach for Justice branded products across key lifestyle categories, including bedding and room décor, back to school, optical frames, arts and crafts, games, and party goods. Strategic partnerships with key manufacturers and select retailer partners will be supported on Justice’s marketing platforms and through marketing opportunities with partners.

Funko-no-logoTarget Rolls Out ‘Stranger Things’ Exclusives for Season 2 Premiere

Target and Netflix teamed up for a partnership to offer exclusive products inspired by the Netflix Original Series, Stranger Things. Season two of the series debuts on October 27 on the streaming network. The product rollout began this week featuring apparel, music, dinnerware, and toys.

Products include a retro-packaged Blu-Ray/DVD combo pack; new Funko Pop!, VYNL, 8-Bit, action figures, and plush from Funko; Stranger Things board games from Hasbro; and more.

“Netflix and the wildly popular programs they create have become part of our culture and our guests’ everyday lives,” says Mark Tritton, Target executive vice-president and chief merchandising officer. “This unique partnership offers guests access to merchandise they’ll find only at Target, and while we’re getting started with ‘Stranger Things,’ our plans to expand deeper into the Netflix lineup will provide guests with ongoing newness and even more reasons to shop with Target.”

“We’re excited to connect fans with the shows they love,” says Shauna Spenley, Netflix vice president of marketing and consumer products. “The launch of our ‘Stranger Things’ merchandise with Target is part of a broader marketing approach that reflects the overall Netflix experience and we couldn’t imagine a better partner than Target.”

kaws_bf_logo_2Uniqlo Launches Second Kaws x Peanuts UT Collection

Uniqlo will launch a second Peanuts collection for the brand’s UT (Uniqlo T-shirts) range with New York-based artist Kaws. The collection will feature all-black, NYC-inspired designs in honor of Black Friday. Items will be available for men, women, and kids at Uniqlo stores nationwide (excluding Disney Springs location) and at uniqlo.com in late November.

The lineup, which includes T-shirts and sweat shirts, features four styles for men and children and two for women. Snoopy plush toys in sizes large and small that feature Kaws’ signature crossed-out eyes and fabric hand-selected by the artist will also be available.

The first Kaws × Peanuts UT collection, featuring the artist’s interpretation of Snoopy and friends, debuted in last spring.

Bay Tek Games, Jakks Pacific Team for Pull My Finger Home Game

Bay Tek Games teamed up with Jakks Pacific to develop and launch a new home version of its ticket redemption arcade game Pull My Finger. The new family friendly game will launch exclusively at Toys “R” Us this December before rolling out to all retailers next spring.

Bay Tek launched Pull My Finger in 2010 as a novelty ticket redemption game where players pull a monkey’s finger to launch a ball into a play field to hit targets and win tickets.

Bay Tek will also look at its catalog of existing IP, which has been developed across 40 years since Bay Tek’s launch. Future brand extensions may include digital games, board games, toys, character branding, and more.

Bay Tek will also look at its extensive catalog of existing IP, and future brand extensions may include digital games, board games, toys, character branding, and more. Bay Tek is currently rolling out Skee-Ball, the alley roller game that it acquired last year.

Dimensional Branding Group (DBG) is Bay Tek’s exclusive licensing agency representing Skee-Ball. Bay Tek and DBG have partnered to add new licensing partners and further grow the brand.

BWB_LOGO_FINAL_HRF (1)Alex Brands, Alpha International to Roll Out New Big Wheel Product

Alex Brands entered a licensing agreement with Alpha International to launch new Big Wheel products, which will start rolling out for spring 2018.

“The Big Wheel brand fits perfectly within the Alex portfolio of classic brands. We’ll be manufacturing it in the U.S.A. We look forward to many years of success giving joy to children with the Big Wheel brand,” says Neil Friedman, CEO of Alex Brands.

DHX Media, Signs Largest Content Deal with Amazon

DHX Media announced a large-volume content deal for 13 DHX Media kids’ shows with Amazon Prime Video for its global subscription-video-on-demand (SVOD) service. The agreement marks the largest deal between the two companies to date, covering more than 200 countries and territories and 15 languages.

Under the deal, new titles will be added to the international streaming service for launch beginning this fall, including Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam, Caillou, Johnny Test, Yo Gabba Gabba!, Inspector Gadget, and In the Night Garden.

Today’s announcement comes on the heels of previously announced agreements with Amazon Prime Video in the U.S. for exclusive SVOD and AVOD rights to DHX Media original kids’ series, Looped, as well as additional kids’ content deals in the UK, Germany, and India.

Fruit Ninja Swipes into Board Games

Board game publisher Lucky Duck Games and Halfbrick Studios, developer and publisher of Fruit Ninja, teamed to launch a Kickstarter campaign for the Fruit Ninja tabletop game series, which is now live. Lucky Duck Games is hoping to raise $10,000, which will go directly toward the production and manufacturing costs of the games. To find out more on this new campaign, click here.

Encyclopaedia Britannica Expands Licensing Program

JRL Group, Encyclopaedia Britannica’s exclusive licensing agency, announced the launch of Britannica Virtual Reality Exploration, a new six-book set, developed in partnership with Encyclopaedia Britannica’s official licensed partner, Publications International, sold exclusively at Costco.

The Britannica Virtual Reality Exploration six-book set includes vetted information from Encyclopaedia Britannica plus a virtual reality experience. Each hardcover book features full-color illustrations and photographs, graphics, text, and videos. The six titles include Space, Animals, Dinosaurs, Exploration, Landmarks, and Oceans. The set comes packaged with a virtual reality viewer and instructions for downloading six different free companion apps.It also includes a six-month free subscription to Encyclopaedia Britannica Online.

Discovery, Parques Reunidos Team for Entertainment Centers

Parques Reunidos has partnered with Discovery Communications to develop themed entertainment centers in North America, Western Europe, and Asia-Pacific. The integrated indoor entertainment centers will include interactive entertainment facilities, state-of-the-art rides, a dining area, and a retail store. This partnership will consist of approximately 10 family-friendly centers.

These entertainment centers, of approximately 16,404 square feet, will be themed around topics such as nature, space, the oceans, and adventure and will allow visitors to interact with Discovery brands through inspired destinations.

Developing entertainment spaces in shopping malls and downtown landmark buildings is one of Parques Reunidos’ fundamental development strategies. The group is currently working with a variety of partners to build more than 20 centers, in addition to the six that have already been signed: Centro Comercial Thader (Murcia), Dolce Vita Tejo (Lisbon), Intu Lakeside (London), two at Centro Comercial Xanadú (Madrid), and Lionsgate Entertainment City (New York). These six projects are expected to open in the next two years.

WWE Plans Tapout Apparel Expansion for Fall

WWE plans to expand Tapout athletic apparel to more than 500 Aeropostale stores in November following a 120-store test, moving distribution outside J.C. Penney. The WWE operates Tapout as a joint venture with brand owner Authentic Brands Group (ABG). Aeropostale will start with Tapout mens athletic apparel and potentially add womens and boys in 2018.

The joint venture is also considering extending distribution of Tapout athletic apparel outside the U.S., including the UK, where WWE has a partnership with Sports Direct as well as Brazil, China, Middle East, Mexico, Latin America, and India.

Elizabeth Arden, which licensed Tapout for men’s body sprays being sold through Walmart, is also weighing expanding the line and may add a women’s version in 2018. Elizabeth Arden started to sell sprays at 1,200 Walmart stores in June and has expanded distribution chainwide, says Collins.

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