PlayWise Partners LLC has launched an integrated communications agency. Kicking off at Toy Fair New York, PlayWise Partners will represent international toy and entertainment company, YULU (booth #1765), as their agency of record.
PlayWise Partners was founded by Rachel Griffin and Sheena Stephens, two public relations professionals and toy industry experts. The agency’s mission is to build great brands and inspire playful lifestyles for all ages, with core agency capabilities including media relations, experiential marketing, product launches, influencer activation, event and trade show management, social media, corporate social responsibility, corporate communications and investor relations.
“We are excited to partner with PlayWise and benefit from the expertise of two of the top PR experts in the toy industry,” said Jochem van Rijn, Co-CEO and Co-Founder at YULU. “In the spirit of entrepreneurship, we are proud to support a new business that is led by a powerhouse team of women.”
Co-founders Rachel and Sheena met 16 years ago at a toy industry event in New York City. Each representing toy brands with booths placed in the back corner, they got creative and worked together to wrangle press to their location and garner media attention. From that point, despite working for different companies throughout their careers, they continued to collaborate and support each other to secure coverage for their respective companies or clients.
Rachel is among this year’s Women In Toys: Wonder Woman of the Year Finalists, nominated for her commitment to social responsibility. With 15 years of in-house communications experience, Rachel excels at implementing and negotiating strategic marketing initiatives, while deepening brand awareness year-over-year through comprehensive media coverage, events, digital and social media. Sheena holds both in-house and agency experience, including leadership of integrated communications programs for toy and consumer brands such as Razor USA, where she elevated the scooter category to become a staple of childhood transportation, and Moose Toys, helping catapult Shopkins to become a billion dollar lifestyle brand and licensed property.
Rachel and Sheena combined have achieved toy industry and consumer awards and accolades including 47 TOTY nominations and eight TOTY wins, and four Women in Toys Wonder Woman final nominations for Public Relations and Social Responsibility.