A quick glance at Santoro’s website shows a hugely diverse range of properties aiming at all corners of the market, both in terms of audience and the product sectors.
For example at first look, it would seem that Jeli Deli and Tutti Cutti hit the children’s market. Indeed the brands do lend themselves well to plush, toys and stationery, however they do have some cross over and Tutti Cutti offers an adult apparel range and both brands have stationery ranges that appeal to adults and children alike.
Other properties in the portfolio aim more at an older audience such as the Swanky Modes fashion inspired brand and Drop720, a snowboarding property. Across the board, however, the brands are easily translated into a myriad of sectors and a few years back, the company even did toilet paper.
Perhaps this is behind the success of the company – offering something for everyone, with a quirky, design-led theme.
Since its formation in 1983, Santoro’s philosophy has always been to produce design-led accessories and lifestyle products with the highest degree of innovation and quality.
The company began life with a range of postcards and now, a quarter of a century later, it boasts a portfolio of over 3,000 product lines and has won 28 international awards, but managing director, Jason Freeman says things haven’t changed that much: “Santoro in the 21st Century is not that different from the company formed in the early ‘80s. Their integrity, clarity of vision and core values outline who they are and what they strive to achieve.
“The entrepreneurial spirit that built the company’s heritage is still discernable today, enabling decisions to move the company in whichever artistic direction will be most advantageous.”
Santoro was founded by art directors Lucio and Meera Santoro and now offers its own range of products, including greetings cards, gifts, stationery and fashion accessories. In addition, it has a worldwide licensing program across the brands, with products ranging from foil balloons through to apparel through to skateboards/accessories and more.
Each of the brands works well in various countries, as Freeman explains: “Every brand has bought its own success in different ways, through different categories, or even different countries. For example, Tutti Cutti is enjoying huge success in Latin America, as Jeli Deli is in the United States. As each brand has different qualities the diverse characters have a wide appeal across many cultures and trends.”
With its global appeal and a diverse range, it would be hard for Santoro to go wrong if it continues on a similar track. The last year has been successful despite difficult economic times. Freeman comments: “There is no doubt that we’ve all seen the effects and impact of the credit crunch in some form. However, despite this, we have still seen some incredible success stories. Santoro produce pretty impressive and irresistible products, so we’re in demand.”
More deals are in the pipeline including collectable stickers, publishing, apparel range extensions and other new markets and Freeman hopes that in a year’s time, the firm is: “Still here, still design-led, still innovative, still having fun.”
However, Freeman remains tight-lipped about the particulars of next year’s plans. When asked, he simply replied: “As the saying goes, if I told you that…” We’ll wait and see, then.