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Saban Brands Inks Publishing Deal for Julius Jr. with Random House Children’s Books

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Saban Brands has inked a global publishing deal with Random House Children’s Books for Julius Jr. The publishing program will include an interactive collection of books inspired by the adventures and magical storytelling from the TV series. Random House has acquired worldwide English rights, and the books will be available this fall and will be published under the company’s Golden Books and Random House Books for Young Readers imprints.

The collection for fall will include a full range of color and activity books, leveled readers, storybooks, and novelty books for preschool kids.

Mattel to Acquire Mega Brands

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Mattel Inc. and Mega Brands Inc. have signed a definitive agreement for Mattel’s acquisition, through a wholly owned subsidiary of Mattel Inc., of Mega Brands for $460 million.

The acquisition advances Mattel’s global growth strategy of building upon its world-class portfolio of brands by expanding into two of the fastest-growing toy categories. Mega Brands is the No. 2 player in the $4 billion construction building sets category with its Mega Bloks brand, as well as a competitor in the $2 billion arts and crafts category.

Mattel’s portfolio of brands will complement Mega Brands’ flagship Mega Bloks brand and existing licensed brands, including Halo, Skylanders, Call of Duty, Assassin’s Creed, Power Rangers, Hello Kitty, and SpongeBob SquarePants. The acquisition will give Mattel the opportunity to broaden its relationship with its entertainment partners.

Mega Brands ranks among the top 15 toy companies globally in terms of sales, according to statistics published by The NPD Group last year. Additionally, the company achieved record sales of preschool construction toys. Read the rest of this entry »

Gwen Stefani Launches gx by Gwen Stefani Accessories Collection

SHOEDAZZLE GWEN STEFANI

Gwen Stefani has launched her new accessories label, gx by Gwen Stefani, available exclusively at ShoeDazzle.com/gx.

gx by Gwen Stefani is shoppable in its dedicated boutique on ShoeDazzle.com, with new styles launching monthly. Each release includes both shoes and handbags.

The debut collection mixes elements of tribal, pop, punk, and street influences. Inspirations coalesce in material and construction: African influences surface through wax-cord lacing, braiding, weaving, and pattern. Gwen Stefani’s personal style can be seen through the mesh and lace-up details and the graphic palette of black, white, red, and cobalt. Key silhouettes include slim island platforms, single soles, high wedge sandals, and oversized totes.

 

Chelsea Football Club Added to The Simpsons Global Soccer Program Lineup

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Chelsea Football Club is the latest acclaimed international soccer team to join Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products‘ campaign featuring a collaboration between The Simpsons and soccer. Joining FC Barcelona, FC Zenit Saint Petersburg, Sport Club Corinthians, FC Porto, Juventus, and Boca Juniors, Chelsea Football Club will co-create a line of branded merchandise that will be available to consumers this year. A soccer-themed episode of The Simpsons will air in March on Fox.

Soccer fans worldwide will be able to own a range of exclusive products with the participating club teams that feature The Simpsons branding. Each participating team’s merchandise will include never-before-created “Simpsonized” versions of its main roster, transformed into custom characters as part of the entire line of products.

The soccer-themed episode of The Simpsons will feature Homer and his recruitment as a soccer referee, after Lisa praises his integrity in a Springfield Elementary speech contest held on the youth soccer field.

Additional national and international soccer teams will sign on as part of this licensing partnership in the coming months.

Sprout Unveils New Series and Online Game

Ssu-logo9162011Sprout will premiere its newest series, Zerby Derby, on March 1 during The Sunny Side Up Show. The show is produced and distributed by Breakthrough Entertainment in association with TVO Kids

Sprout is supporting the launch of the series at SproutOnline.com with three new games produced by Breakthrough Entertainment.

Imangi Studios Partners with Factory Entertainment, Basic Fun for Temple Run

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Imangi Studios, creator of Temple Run, has entered partnerships with Factory Entertainment and Basic Fun to expand the Temple Run franchise with plush toys and a handheld LCD game. With more than 500 million downloads of Temple Run and Temple Run 2, the series is one of the biggest in mobile gaming.

Factory Entertainment will produce a line of Temple Run plush toys based on the series’ cast of characters. Demon Monkeys and Temple Idols will be available at retailers this fall, with other characters such as Guy Dangerous and Karma Lee to follow.

Basic Fun will produce the first Temple Run handheld LCD game. The game packs all the fun of Temple Run into a portable and durable device with a carabiner-style clip. After selecting their favorite characters, players can run to escape Demon Monkeys and avoid obstacles with a twist on the classic Temple Run action. The game will be available in Spring 2015.

Innovation First Partners for Hexbug Apparel

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Innovation First International, creators of the Hexbug brand, has partnered with Bioworld Merchandising, granting apparel licensing rights for Hexbug-branded T-shirts and sleepwear. The line is due to appear at select retailers in the U.S. this spring.

Innovation First’s Hexbug products are designed to give children a positive experience with robotics at a young age. Hexbug-branded apparel and sleepwear joins other licensing partnerships that the company has forged for 2014, including a partnership with Crocs to create Hexbug Jibbitz, decorative shoe charms that fit into the holes of Crocs shoes, as well as a new partnership for Transformers: Age of Extinction, in which Hexbug is bringing the iconic franchise characters to life for fans of all ages, with the Transformers Hexbug Warriors & Nano product lines.

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