It’s shaping up to be a busy show for 4Kids, with a range of classic and new properties on display.
A retro licensing programme is already underway for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles covering such categories as apparel, accessories, collectibles, gift and publishing. The Yu-Gi-Oh franchise, meanwhile, is being pushed with a new animated TV series featuring new duellists, vehicles and a new storyline. The licensing programme will include a toy line, a trading card game and a video game for Nintendo DS and Wii.
The Dog, The Cat and The Pig will all be showcased, while big hope Dinosaur King will take up a large proportion of the stand.
Newly signed Russian brand GoGoriki will be unveiled at Olympia, while Monster Jam and Jim Henson’s Pajanimals will also have a strong presence.
There will certainly be plenty to see at the Beanstak stand as the firm works with a wide selection of internationally known brands.
Paris Hilton, DIY brand Stanley, Land Rover, Jaguar, Ford, Volvo, Vespa, Pampers, Rachel Zoe, Harley-Davidson, Jack Daniel's, Dr Seuss, Love Hearts, Alan Titchmarsh, Max Factor, Sophie Grigson and The Art of Elegance by designer Elizabeth Emanuel are all looked after by the firm.
A first time exhibitor at the show, Bulldog will be showcasing Thumb Wrestling Federation which, by the time of the Olympia event, will have series two available on DVD with a third on the way, production on series four complete and a merchandising programme across key High Street retailers under way.
The unique Orsum Island should be a big draw for visitors, while classics like Bill & Ben and Andy Pandy; gift and plush ranges Little Ewe, Soft Spots and Baby Bunny Bundles; Sandy Island, a new international brand of children’s characters linked in a storyline concept; and lifestyle brand Cannonball 8000 will also be showcased.
Toy shop favourite Miffy is going back to basics in traditional primary colour styling. Leading the way in plush and gifts is Rainbow Designs which is developing a pre-school range with a cute animals theme, in addition to a more sophisticated toy collection based on Miffy’s iconic appeal. The Little Star collection will also be on display, along with Rainbow’s 2009 plush launch, featuring a Miffy ‘princess’ theme.
Bubblegum, The World of Roald Dahl and Guess How Much I Love You will also be on the DRi stand.
The show will see Ignition launching two new properties: Pet Poets Club and The Bogies, in addiiton to Juicy Lucy Designs (which debuted at last year's show).
Gift brand Pet Poets Club was initially an internet-based brand launching in 2006, and now has MySpace and YouTube pages, plus a growing presence at retail. Key partners include www.greetz.com, Sharpcards (mobile messaging) and Is it Art? (wallet cards).
The Bogies, meanwhile, arrived in 2006 and are collectible keychains aimed at six to 16 year-old boys. All are parodies of well-known TV, film and musical characters such as Bogie Won, Optimus Slime, Axel Nose and Dr Goo. Key partners to date include Dandy Xtreme from DC Thomson, Copywrite Stationery and Taymai.
One of the largest and oldest international art licensing companies in the world will be bringing a number of new concepts to the show. These include Snow Buddies by Shelly - a collection of illustrations which feature arctic animals and the world they live in; new ecological series Smoothy & Biboo; Hanadeka, which has been created by photographer Yoneo Morita using a fish eye lens; and Woodstock Vision, a photographic collection to tie in with the 40th anniversary of the event.
Licensing Management International
The firm has recently renewed its agreement with Underground Ernie, with additional episodes now being planned, while it has also concluded a number of deals for Premier League kids property The Likeaballs.
In addition, there is now a broad licensing programme for Original Mini, which will be 50 in 2009, including numerous die-cast products with strong support from Corgi Classics and r/c vehicles to name a few. Other automotives licensed worldwide by LMI include MG, Austin-Healey and the classic Morris, which is 60 in 2009, as well as London taxis.
Nostalgia brand licensing programmes include Pepsi, 7up, Spam, Ingersoll and Route 66, as well as iconic images of Marilyn Monroe and Elvis through Elvisly Yours. NASA Images has also just appointed LMI as its key European licensing agency.
Licensing by Design
The firm has been appointed as the licensing agent for Emma Thomson, the creator of a range of successful children's characters and the writer and illustrator of over 100 children's books, published in 22 countries with sales totalling more than five million.
In 2005, Thomson developed Isabella's Toy Box, which launched in Boots stores on a line of baby toiletries and toys. This was followed in 2006 by the first Isabella book and in September 2007, Marks & Spencer launched a baby clothing line. There are now six Isabella's Toy Box titles, with the latest published in March and September this year.
Thomson's latest creation is Lili Loves, which is already an established character from the Lili and Pickle books. Books, cards and other merchandise are in the pipeline.
LBD's current property portfolio includes Bagpuss, The Jasmine Factory, Girl du Jour, The Clangers and Ivor the Engine.
The new identity following the acquisition by Parthenon of Entara will be presented at Olympia, with the firm unveiling a raft of new properties, too.
Dex Hamilton: Alien Entomologist is a comedy/adventure series appealing to children aged five and upwards; Moomin is a classic kids’ property, originally created in the 1940s by Finnish writer Tove Jansson; and Freefonix is a musical animated action/adventure series, which is being billed as Gorillaz meets Guitar Hero.
Other favourites on display will include Puppy in My Pocket, The Magic Roundabout, Domo and Jakers.
With DC Thomson, Start is looking to build on the growing interest in comic nostalgia by developing licences from the firm’s archive such as The Beano, The Dandy, Jackie and Commando.
Other properties on the stand will include Hana’s Helpline, which boasts a number of key licensees already including Golden Bear in the toy sector. The firm is currently developing the licensing programme for Sky One’s Gladiators, too, as well as working on a number of other ventures from Sky including Brainiac and Are You Smarter Than a 10 Year Old? Design brand Bang on the Door will also be shown off on the stand.
New pre-school property Big & Small will also be making an appearance on the stand. The Kindle Entertainment show is due to premiere on Cbeebies in the late autumn featuring the voice talents of Lenny Henry and Imelda Staunton.
Taymai (AT New Media)
Taymai - which stands for 'tell all your mates about it' - enables owners of new/established character properties to build public interest and awareness using the internet.
It offers a wide range of services, including developing conceptual ideas into full character properties, micro-sites, games and viral marketing applications, flash and 3D animation. Other services are developing online merchandise and downloads with the option of selling them through its Print-on-Demand shop.
Launching at BLE will be the Taymai Comic - a free interactive multimedia page turning comic book aimed at eight to 14 year-olds. It will include a mix of 2D/3D character comic strips, 3D animation, video, short stories, games, interactive puzzles and features. Character owners and creators can contribute content free of charge and earn revenue from print-on-demand merchandise sales.
The Licensing Company
TLC will be using the show as a platform to launch new properties – but is playing its cards close to its chest at the moment as to what they might be. It will say, however, it will be showcasing Dreamworks’ Monsters vs Aliens and Madagascar 2; Clone Wars (LucasFilm); Bratz (MGA); Gruffulo (Magic Light Productions); LazyTown; Sex and the City (HBO); and Ghostbusters (Sony Pictures Entertainment).
The Licensing Machine
The firm is aiming to build unique brands with programmes including HV, Manga and TV dstribution providing full service on product development, event marketing and promotional. The portfolio includes the likes of Naruto and Deltora Quest, based on the fantasy series of books by Scholastic and the first Western title ever to be transformed into a Japanese manga and TV show.
FullMetal Alchimist, Bleach, D-Gray Man, Darker Than Black and Death Note are also in the portfolio, as well as tween and teen magazine brand Mizz.