BLE 2011: Start Licensing picks up Asterix in the UK

Agency to represent iconic French character after deal with Les Editions Albert Rene.
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Start Licensing has secured the third party licensing rights for the UK and Ireland to the Asterix character.

The firm is now looking to develop products for the Les Editions Albert Rene property in the apparel, giftware, bags, greeting cards, bedding and collectables sectors.

The first book - Asterix the Gaul - was published in the UK back in 1961. Since then, the 34 albums have sold over 23 million copies in the English language, while the character has also featured in a number of live action and animation films. There is also a dedicated Asterix theme park in France, which receives around two million visitors per year.

"We believe that Asterix fits well into our portfolio, presenting a great opportunity for us to develop some fantastic licensed products using the unique graphic style of Asterix, and bringing some of its French falvour to bear in the UK market," said Start MD, Ian Downes.

"Asterix has had a lot of success in apparel in France for example, and we feel some of the graphics used in France would adapt well to the UK market. Asterix has a great heritage - indeed I read the albums when I was younger and remember them fondly - this is one of the reasons that we were keen to work on such a prestigious brand."

Downes continued: "Editions Albert Rene have identified the UK market as one that they believe would be receptive to licensing, based on the continuing success of the graphic novels and the success Orion have achieved."

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