Viz heads back to licensing

Samantha Loveday

By Samantha Loveday

September 12th 2008 at 10:46AM
Viz heads back to licensing

Comic magazine ties with Metrostar for first foray into licensing for many years.

Metrostar will be showcasing the iconic grown up comic magazine Viz at next month's Brand Licensing Europe, marking the brand's first foray into licensing for a number of years.

Created by Chris Donald from his bedroom in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in 1979, Viz became one of the leading magazine titles in the UK. It created household names of characters such as Roger Mellie, Nobby's Piles, Johnny Fartpants, Buster Gonad, Sid the Sexist and The Fat Slags.

As well as cartoon strips, Viz featured regular items such as Roger's Profanisausraus, Letterbocks, Top Tips and spoof news stories.

Early Viz spin offs included TV series for The Fat Slags, Roger Mellie and Sid the Sexist, a computer game, a novelty hit single and a TV ad for Lucozade. More recently, Viz has sold branded products such as t-shirts, prints and mobile downloads direct to its readers from its website and magazine.

Acquired by Dennis Publishing in 2003, Viz magazine still sells over 88,000 copies a month and has a readership of over 500,000. It publishes ten issues of the magazine a year and the 2009 annual - The Last Turkey in the Shop - will be released in November.

"Viz and its characters evoke great memories for a generation and yet it's still as fresh and funny as it ever was," said Claire Potter, boss of Metrostar. "Book and magazine sales prove this brand has great commercial potential and we're looking forward to unleashing it on the licensing community at Brand Licensing."