Martin Yaffe becomes master toy for Harry and Toto

BBC Worldwide adds firm to licensee stable for pre-school hit.
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Toy company Martin Yaffe International continues to grow its licensed portfolio, today revealing it has been appointed by BBC Worldwide as the master toy partner for pre-school show Harry and Toto.

Currently broadcasting on Cbeebies, Harry and Toto comes from creator Paul Shuttleworth of Handle and Spout Productions.

The aim was to breath new life into the classic Aesop fable, with the show exploring the world of opposites for Harry the Hare and Toto the Tortoise.

Julia Posen, commercial director at BBC Worldwide Children's and Licensing, said: "Harry and Toto is our major licensing launch for autumn/winter 2009 and we're delighted to have Martin Yaffe on board to lead the charge.

"The programme has had a tremendous following on Cbeebies already and with the second series confirmed, we're confident that demand for product will continue to grow."

Under its Born to Play brand, Martin Yaffe will introduce plush items and lunchware in 2009, followed by figures, play-sets, vehicles and wheeled toys in 2010. All products will aim to encompass the core values of the programme - co-operation, compromise and understanding - while teaching pre-schoolers how to embrace opposites and find a solution.

Ronnie Yaffe, MD of Martin Yaffe, added: "I am thrilled to have been appointed master toy licensee for Harry and Toto; it is the perfect addition to our stable of much-loved children's character licences."

BBC Worldwide will also be talking to other partners at Toy Fair and Spring Fair 2009. With the theme of opposites lending itself to a wide range of products, there are opportunities for games, stationery, clothing, tableware and other categories.

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