Licensing News 2011 – Licensed Properties for People of All Ages

BRANDORA Redaktion (Katja Lux) - February 2011

From infants to senior citizens – licensed products appeal to everyone. More and more manufacturers rely on licensing to generate significant growth in sales and tap into new markets. We would like to provide you with a short outlook on new products and properties on the German market:

“Dibedibedab” – The KiKANiNCHEN accompanies the youngest TV audience through their KI.KA. slot. The cute blue rabbit is programme, umbrella brand and licensed character at the same time. Kikaninchen and Christian, its imaginative and good humoured friend, meet daily to play games and discover the world together with their young audience. Monday to Friday between 6.50 and 10.25 a.m. the children’s channel by ARD and ZDF provides programme only for viewers between three and six. KiKANiNCHEN presents this special preschool slot of the same name. The show is tailor-made for the youngest target demographic, and topics tie in with everyday life and experience of preschool children in Germany. Simba Dickie Group has taken care of KiKANiNCHEN and introduced their new licensed product range at the 2011 International Toy Fair in Nuremberg. The bright-yellow KiKANiNCHEN Bobby Car by BIG, with its light blue steering wheel and rims, will certainly lift young children’s spirits. Eichhorn’s wooden KiKANiNCHEN toy range includes a wooden xylophone with eight bars, two mallets, a song book and classic wooden building blocks to encourage children’s creativity and imagination. NORIS Spiele launch board games, puzzles and a game of Pairs to the German market. What is more, whole range of different sized soft toys to the popular KiKANiNCHEN character by Nicotoy makes young hearts beat faster. Art&Fun developed a collection of creative toys including a set of licensed KiKANiNCHEN beads. So the product portfolio of Simba Dickie Group covers almost the whole toy market.

This year the Studio100 Group, rights owner of many big properties from children and youth entertainment, made their exhibitor’s debut on the International Toy Fair in Nuremberg and displayed a whole range of merchandise to their top brands. Since their foundation in 2007 the Munich-based subsidiary to the parent company in Belgium, Studio100 has become an important partner for manufacturers, retailers and TV companies in Germany. The acquisition of EM.Entertainment GmbH in 2008 proved to be a masterstroke: The rights to countless classic TV properties for children including “Heidi”, “Maya the Bee” and “Vicky Viking” passed into Studio100’s ownership. Since then, there is hardly any household or child room in Germany without products, toys, or brands that originally come from the successful rights agency. Highlights in 2011 are “House of Anubis” and “Maya the Bee”.

House of Anubis: The mystery show “House of Anubis” features a group of teenagers who live together in a boarding house, the House of Anubis. The dark walls conceal ancient secrets and each season provides a perfect mixture of mystery, comedy and humour. The show tells about great riddles, hidden chambers, tricky hints, mysterious objects, horrid teachers, lost students and – last but not least – first love. To date, House of Anubis is the biggest production of the leading children’s channel Nickelodeon in Germany and soon became an iconic hit show within the target demographic. More than 100,000 copies of the book to the series “Der geheime Club der alten Weide” and the board game “Das Haus Anubis” have been sold since their market launch in 2009. Now even three new board games to “House of Anubis” enter the German market: In “Das geheimnisvolle Amulett”, “Der Schatz von Anubis”, and “Der Pfad der sieben Sünden” two to four or five players act as the inhabitants of the House of Anubis. Their mission: Solve riddles, discover treasures and always keep ahead of your fellow players. “House of Anubis” was the most successful new show in 2009 and still enjoys increasing popularity among the Nickelodeon audience. In addition to board games and other innovative products, Studio100 also offers a broad range of products that already stood the test of time on retail shelves.

Maya the Bee – the fastest bee on the children’s market celebrates her 35th birthday: Maya the Bee lives on a corn poppy meadow together with lazy Willy and many other friends. On her quest for happiness away from the strict rules of her beehive she finds exciting adventures and difficult situations. With her lively and inquisitive nature and her joy of discovery she always finds a solution and learns to make her way to freedom. Every child in Germany knows and loves Maya the Bee. For more than three decades Maya has been present on German TV channels like the ZDF, KI.KA and on the Sky Junior slot. “Willis Würfel Waben” is a new game developed by Studio100 for children aged 4+ where players try to do Maya puzzles as fast as possible. On occasion of Maya’s 35th TV anniversary another board game – “Maja’s Geburtstagsfest” will hit German retail shelves. And hauck TOYS FOR KIDS present new doll accessories to Maya the Bee: Doll prams and accessories in fresh design – strollers, doll prams, doll bouncers, highchairs and travel cots. All products will enter the toy market just in time for the Holiday Season 2011. Maya is an iconic brand for three generations … and that’s a good reason to celebrate!

Kids and grown-ups love it so – the happy world of Hans Riegel Bonn (HARIBO)! Almost everyone in Germany and abroad knows the HARIBO slogan and people all over the world love the sweet little Gold Bears from Bonn. Manufacturers like WIKING have already launched the HARIBO vehicles to the toy market and now JAMARA Modelltechnik introduced their licensed R/C model helicopter in HARIBO design to trade visitors on the International Toy Fair in Nuremberg.

Disney Germany provides a licensed property for every age group. The successful “Disney Baby” brand for the very young will appear in new design this spring. All franchise products for infants and young children under the age of 18 months will undergo a re-launch to facilitate brand recognition and visibility for all “Disney Baby” products.

But Disney has news for elder children as well: This spring Winnie the Pooh sees his theatrical release throughout Germany. Eeyore has once more lost his tail. Pooh and his friends immediately decide to help Eeyore. But when Pooh wants to ask Christopher Robin to join in, the friends from Hundred-Acre-Wood realize that the boy has disappeared. Pooh fears the worst: Their friend must have been kidnapped! Owl sends the whole gang on a wild quest to save Christopher Robin. It turns out to be “a very busy day for a bear who simply set out to find some hunny”, says Pooh.

This year, Timmy is extremely popular with Super RTL. Top class licensees have discovered the cute lamb from “Shaun the Sheep” and “Timmy Time” for their product range: With children’s clothing like jeans, sweatshirts, hoodies and T-shirts by Santex and summer wear by the New York fashion label Capelli, children may soon wear Timmy from top to bottom. What is more, Timmy makes Germany bloom and blossom! The flower campaign “Pflanzen mit Timmy” (Planting with Timmy) starts in March 2011. 180 garden centres throughout Germany will distribute about 100,000 booklets with flower seeds. Children bring spring to their own window sills with “Timmy’s Daisy Seeds”. And when they want to replant the flowers to the garden outside, they will - of course! - use the Timmy outdoor products by Wader. Invitations for the next children’s party will be written on Timmy cards, the birthday table will be decorated with Timmy paper plates and cups and lots of Timmy balloons. Amscan, worldwide leading supplier of party products and decoration, will launch these items end of 2011 to the German market. And when the weather gets colder, children apply functional cold weather goods like gloves, hats, and mufflers from Capelli. This way they are perfectly equipped to go sledging outside – on a Timmy sledge, of course. Next winter, Alpen Gaudi®, a label by sledge manufacturer IPV, will launch their own Timmy collection to Germany. In addition to two steerable sledges and a sledge without runners they will also provide a mini sledge tailor-made for the security requirements of very young children. Two space-saving bum boards top off the range.

Heunec Company specializes in licensed products. For the young ones they now feature a fairytale license. Yoyo and Doc Croc, the main characters of the animated show “SimsalaGrimm” will enter the toy market in plush. Just in time for the International Toy Fair Heunec introduced various soft toys to the licensed property. SimsalaGrimm is a hit TV series telling the Grimm’s Fairy Tale Classics to children aged 3 to 10. Each time, Yoyo and Doc Croc fly into the story on their fairytale book. Here they “help” the main characters and when their mission is completed they fly back onto their bookshelf.

Active Merchandising offers the perfect license for girls (irrespective of age): Bella Sara provides play fun online and offline. Girls just love to collect, play and swap the beautiful horse cards. Since January 2011 Funny Farm officially sells and distributes Bella Sara Trading Cards in Germany.

The Maus turns 40 and WDR mediagroup licensing launch their own Maus collection for boys to the German market. These products were originally only designed for girls between 6 and 9. But now, in March 2011, the first-ever boys collection will hit retail shelves. With items like a periscope, multifunctional headwear and LED key ring pendants the new collection will focus on adventures and discoveries. Like before, Maus and Elefant will continue their presence on the toys, stationery and gift item market.