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ZAG Expands in Latin America, Appoints Angela Cortez


Award-winning independent animation studio ZAG continues to grow its global consumer products team, appointing its first VP for the Latin America region, former Viacom executive Angela Cortez, to the position of VP, Consumer Products, Latin America.  The announcement was made by Julian Zag, Executive Vice President, Global Operations.

Cortez will be based in Brazil but will also work from the Company’s newly opened office in Miami, established to support the burgeoning activity across Latin America. She will spearhead the licensing and new business development efforts for ZAG’s portfolio of “ZAG Heroez” brands, including global mega-hit Miraculous – Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir and the upcoming Ghostforce, reporting to Kirk Bloomgarden, ZAG’s SVP, Global Licensing.  She will also manage the company’s licensing agents, including Gloob, Tycoon, IMC and Exim.

Cortez has more than 30 years of experience in licensing and retail in the  LATAM region, most recently serving for 12 years for Viacom Brasil Networks and VIMN, where she rose through the ranks from Licensing Director in Brazil, to VP of South America and Central America, and in the last year, to Vice President for the LATAM region where she restructured and integrated the entire  LATAM team. Prior, she worked for seven years for Warner Bros. South Inc. as Licensing Director following a two-year stint with Hopi Hari S/A, the second largest amusement park in Brazil.  She started her career at the retail chain Wal-Mart Brasil S/A as manager of softlines, babyclothing and accessories.  In her career, Cortez has developed licensing programs for several leading brands in the region, including The Powerpuff Girls, Pucca, The Backyardigans, and PAW Patrol.

Additional executive changes at the company include a promotion forEva Rodriguez, former Licensing Director for LATAM, to Director of Global Licensing, where she will work with senior management on consumer products strategy and operations.

“There has been exceptional enthusiasm for our “Miraculous World” across the Latin America region since we launched the brand five years ago,” commented Julian Zag. “Angela’s appointment will ensure that we strengthen our presence and brands in the region and further expand our consumer audiences, as we get ready to roll-out season four of the series this summer, and release our upcoming US$100M+ theatrical movie for holiday 2021 and spring 2022.”

“I am excited to be working with such a creative and innovative company, and to be part of its miraculous team of executives. While the challenges and demands of the market have grown due to current global complexities, interest and appreciation of quality products in terms of content and licensing have grown. My goal is to expand ZAG’s activities in the Latin America region based on a sustained and broad knowledge of the needs of different markets, inclusive leadership, and the development of partnerships based on mutual respect and growth,” says Cortez.

Pan regional partners currently include The Novelty Book Company, who will be launching a new board and activity book collection in Q2 2021 across Mexico, Central America, Chile, Peru, and Argentina; Panini for stickers and magazines; and Ferrerofor Easter Eggs.

In Brazil, oBoticario, the world’s largest Perfumery and Cosmetics franchise with over 4,000 stores, launched their first-ever co-branded product for Children’s Day, September 2020, featuring Miraculous Ladybug with their best-selling fragrance line, Sophie. The first inventory sold out within a few days. A Burger King promotion is currently running with 500,000 collectible figures.  ZAG also has an exclusive retail program with Lojas Riachuelo, the largest fast-fashion chain in Brazil.  Other licensing partners in the territory include Ciranda Cultural (publishing), Regina Festas (party and costumes), and Selmi (Divertix cookies).  And, coming soon to Brazil will be the most charming,  instagrammable experience, Selfie Gramado, an outdoor interactive park that will feature a Miraculous branded area with life-size models of the series’ iconic scenes and characters.

In Mexico, the new toyline from Playmates and ZAG Labs, distributed by Bandai Mexico, launched in fall 2020.  By year-end, the line-wide sell through exceeded 85%, while the core fashion doll segment sell-through exceeded 90%. Strong growth for the core fashion doll line and role play is anticipated for 2022.   Other licensees in Mexico include Unions Kids (apparel), Photopack (backpacks); 4E (shampoo, soap, and hand sanitizer); Flying Wheel (skates, scooters tricycle, bicycles, and protective gear); and Andromeda (stationary and dinnerware exclusively for Avon).

Disney Channel and Disney Plus have the rights to Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir across LATAM, excluding Brazil (S1 – 5), and Netflix has rights to seasons 1 – 3 (excluding Brazil).  Additionally, Gloob’s Globoplay has rights to all seasons.  In Mexico, Televisa holds the free to air rights.