The Teletubbies brand is to be “reinvigorated” after over ten years as a major pre-school property, the MD of BBC Worldwide Children’s & Licensing has told Licensing.biz.
Teletubbies has enjoyed phenomenal success over the past decade and is still the number two infant licence behind Winnie the Pooh. Master toy partner Tomy is the number one infant plush manufacturer due the strength of its Teletubbies business. The firm recorded strong sales last Christmas with its Dance with Me Teletubby and this continues to be a hero product throughout 2009.
“Teletubbies is still an important property for us and does very well globally,” Neil Ross Russell told Licensing.biz.
“We’re looking very closely at Teletubbies. Looking at what we’ve got in our portfolio, Teletubbies really stands out as a brand where the awareness is still very high, particularly in key markets like the UK and US, and yet we’d be the first to admit that it hasn’t received the love and attention we should’ve given it over the last couple of years.
“We need to think about how we can reinvigorate the brand, on screen and among our licensees and most importantly at retail. You will see and hear more about Teletubbies over the next year. We are absolutely not stopping it, but it is one of those brands, for me, if we don’t start focusing on it over the next year or two there’s a danger that it will just wither on the vine.
“The potential in Teletubbies is huge; it’s a brand that people are already aware of, they know about the values, they know children love the show and also the licensed products. It’s one we would be foolish to walk away from I think.”
As well as Tomy, other Teletubbies licensees include Branded Clothing International – which has a strong selling tween/teen clothing line – Amscan, Euromark, HJ Heinz, Jolly Roger, Kid Kreations and Royal Jumbo BV.