Mega Brands and Activision's Skylanders are partnering together to develop Mega Bloks and Mega Puzzles toys for multiple years. Chief Innovation Officer of Mega Brands, Vic Bergrand, says the company is excited about their new partnership, which he calls the "hottest property in the kids' space." "We look forward to bringing the endless creative play possibilities of Mega Bloks together with our innovative line of Mega Puzzles to the world of Skylanders Giants," he says.
Merchandise for the new Disney Pixar film, which will be released this summer, is set to hit store shelves this month before the film's theater release. Brave products include dolls, costumes, toy sets, plush toys, apparel and accessories. Mattel produced the dolls based on the film, Posh Paws the plush toys and role-playing items from Jakks Pacific.
The Rugged Bear apparel line is extending from the newborn and infant lines coming out this summer to include sizes toddler to 18. The apparel will be mix and match knit and woven pieces, focusing on school wear essentials such as sweaters, basic tees, corduroys, cargo pants and turtlenecks. Licensees for Rugged Bear include iApparel for outerwear, Gina Group for crib shoes and hosiery, FAB Starpoint for backpacks, Eastman for footwear, CNY Apparel for pajamas and underwear and Cutie Pie Baby for newborn and infant clothing.
After three decades in business, Malibu Dream Girl, Inc. changed its name to Malibu Design Group. The name change went into effect on June 1st and is part of a larger rebranding effort to better suit the company's expanding and diverse brand portfolio. Recently Malibu Design Group established a new headquarters in Los Angeles with an expanded team of designers and a new showroom in New York.
Online retailer Piperlime, a division of Gap Inc., will open its first brick-and-mortar storefront this fall in New York City's SoHo neighborhood. The 4,000-square-foot store will offer a similar curated assortment as online and be styled as a boutique. The San Francisco-based company, which launched in 2006, sells a selection of kids' shoes from brands like Havaianas, Hunter, Jumping Jacks and Livie & Luca, to name but a few.
NPD Group, a market research firm, reported a 1 percent growth in the licensed toy industry in the first quarter. NPD Group industry analyst Anita Frazier stated that licensing is a crucial feature for the toy industry.
The popularity of The Trash Pack figures has hit an all-time high, with 1 million products sold. This figure comes two weeks before its projected forecast. The boys' brand manager of Flair Anne-Marie Noon urges retailers to take part in the trend, as she states the company expects figures to reach at least 4 million by the end of 2012. "We are delighted with the performance of The Trash Pack," she says, "and are working hard to keep retailers supplied in order to meet consumer demand ahead of the imminent launch of The Trash Pack Series 2."
On Thursday, May 10, leaders of the licensing industry gathered to discuss important industry details and the upcoming Licensing Expo on June 12 to 14 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. Tony Lisanti, editor in chief of License!
Jessica Simpson is expanding her fashion empire with a new line of maternity apparel. The line will be sold exclusively at Destination Maternity through a licensing agreement with Camuto Group starting in the fall. The agreement to design, develop, produce and distribute the collection marks the 24th product classification for Simpson's eponymous collection and will feature the same vintage 70s feel found throughout many of Simpson's fall lines.
Tel-Aviv and U.S.-based Delta Galil Industries Ltd. is set to expand its global presence when it buys Schiesser AG, a leading manufacturer and marketer of children's underwear for the German market. The acquisition is expected to be completed in July for an estimated $90 million. Delta Galil, a global manufacturer of branded and private-label apparel for men, women and children in the Middle East, the U.S., Asia and Europe is not yet present in German-speaking countries. Schiesser commands 25 percent of the German market in children's underwear.