Viz Media has detailed the latest in its plans to make the hit Japanese animé franchise Yo-Kai Watch a success across Europe, with a portfolio of partners it expects to exceed 100 by 2017.
The firm, a leader in bringing Japanese Entertainment content to Europe, has so far secured 70 licensees for the popular animated series that has swept the Japanese market in recent years.
With Nintendo and Hasbro already on board, delivering the brand to a global audience, Viz Media expects to see its portfolio of partners exceed 100 by the end of the year in all European countries.
While some licensees have been scheduled to launch from Q4 of 2016, the core consumer product programme for the brand is set to hit shelves in early 2017.
In the UK, Kinnerton, Centum, Fashion UK, Character World and Blueprint have all signed with the brand, while in France Ravensburger, Hachette, Sahinley, CTI and D’Arpeje have all come on board.
Giochi Preziosi, Perletti, Balocco and Rizzoli round out the brand’s Italian activity, while The Cookie Company and United Labels along with Hot-shots, Cyp, SporTandem and Tomsa lead the partner line up in Germany and Spain respectively.
Further deals are expected to be secured across Turkey, Israel and Russia within the year.
On the retailer front, major names in each European territory are supporting the Yo-Kai Watch brand including the likes of Toys R Us, Carrefour, Auchan, Asda, HMV, Gamestop and Amazon.
“The response from licensees and retailers has been amazing form the beginning,” said Aadil Tayouga, licensing and retail manager at Viz Media Europe.
“We have been working closely with our licensing agents to select the best local partners in the industry and we keep adding new licensees every week. We are now very much looking forward to the launch in Q4 2016.”