The Licensing Blog

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Happy New Year from The Licensing Book!

From our team to yours, have a happy and healthy 2011!

There Might Be Hope for Playboy…in Asia

The Internet is an amazing invention. People use it for all sorts of things: buying clothes, making friends, watching movies, playing music, the list goes on and on. So it was inevitable that people would turn to the web for soft-core porn.

Playboy magazine, one of the most infamous adult periodicals, has taken a nosedive when it comes to readers and advertising dollars—struggling with competition from the Internet.

That might all change in the near future, and Asia might serve as the light at the end of the company’s dark, bumpy tunnel.

According to a recent article in the Boston Herald, Asia appears to be the companies fastest growing region. Although the actual magazine is banned in China, Playboy Enterprises Inc., opened a nightclub in Macau—the only area in China where gambling is legal—in November. The company also plans to open a Playboy Mansion there in 2012.

According to the article, in Asia, Playboy is more of a fashion brand, and the company is turning its energies to promote it as such—entering into the world of entertainment and lifestyle branding.  Also according to the article, the company has been cutting deals to sell Playboy-branded merchandise across Asia.

The numbers seem optimistic: By 2011, Asia will account for 34 percent of licensing revenue, and by 2012, it will bring in $20 million in licensing revenue.

Hmm, so does this mean Hugh Hefner will hold his swanky parties in Macau now? I wonder if he knows how to speak Chinese…

Mackenzie Allison

eBay Releases Top-Shopped Items List

Most of us don’t have tons of money tucked under the mattress to pull out for the latest techno gadget or trendy fashion accessory. When you just can’t part with the Benjamins even for the most coveted item, you can always find an answer through eBay. According to a recent article in the Los Angeles Times, the online auction site has released its top-shopped items in 2010 list.

According to the list, compiled by analyzing sales and search data across categories to identify the year’s major moments and movements, the top shopped and pop culture obsessions of 2010 include:

1. iPhone 4

2. Barbie

3. Military jackets

4. Hot Wheels

5. iPad

6. World Cup

7. The Beatles

8. Silly Bandz

9. Alice in Wonderland

10. New Orleans Saints

11. Marc Jacobs

12. LeBron James

Top shopped in style and fashion obsessions include:

1. Military jackets

2. Plaid

3. 1950s

4. Neon

5. Marc Jacobs

6. Feathers

7. Faux fur

8. Tory Burch

9. Ankle boots

10. Leopard print

It appears The Licensing Book and eBay are in sync when it comes to pop culture obsessions—we included Silly Bandz in our Year in Review—although we aren’t too sure about feathers and fake fur.

Mackenzie Allison

Konami to Kick Off 2011 with New Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game

Just because the holidays are coming to a close doesn’t mean the gift giving needs to stop. Come January 25, kids of all ages can unwrap the Yu-Gi-Oh! trading card game Duelist Pack: Yusei 3. From Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc., players get an opportunity to add more of Yusei’s favorite cards to their Decks, including cards from the newest season of the Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s television series.

What to expect: The 30-card Duelist Pack set includes eight new cards, including four new monsters, two new Spell Cards, and two new Traps. Duelists will be able to create duplicates of their Synchro Monsters with the new Battle Waltz card, shut down their opponent’s strategy with Justice Bringer, or use their opponent’s monsters to perform their own Synchro Summons with Synchro Material.

Mackenzie Allison

Tupac and Biggie Bobbleheads???

Everyone knows someone that collects bobbleheads. It could be your mother, best friend, or even the crazy cat lady at work—the one who also boasts an ever-changing array of holiday sweaters. Chances are, their collections include sports stars, cartoon figures and maybe even a politician or two. Come next year, they can add a touch of Hip Hop cool to their collection with Biggie and Tupac.

Barrett LaRoda, chairman of the LaRoda Group Ltd., has finalized a deal on behalf of Funko that will license celebrities as Hip Hop-branded figures. Funko manufactures bobbleheads, vinyl action figures, and plush toys. LaRoda negotiated the licensing for Biggie and Tupac, making them the first two figures that will hit the market worldwide in early 2011. LaRoda has targeted several other Hip Hop artists for the Funko Hip Hop product line. Funko President Brian Mariotti says, “Traditional bobbleheads have always been caricatured and haven’t resembled the artist, whereas Funko has created a line that not only resembles the artist, but captures their swagger.”

SpongeBob SquarePants Extends Into Central Asia and Eastern Europe

Nickelodeon Consumer Products International has signed on licensee C-Trade for sports equipment and accessories (bikes, rid-on cars, tennis sets, play tents, etc.) for kids. The deal covers several countries, including Armenia to Uzbekistan via Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Ukraine.

Additionally, Unilever has renewed its deal for toothpaste for Turkey and Northern Cyprus, and Pentra has signed on as a SpongeBob licensee for a range of bags, backpacks, badges and charms, mobile cases, clocks, lamps, mugs, and stationery for Poland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

C & F Enterprises, Inc. and Gallerie II launch home accessories line “Fish Outta Water.”

C & F Enterprises, Inc. and Gallerie II have announced the new line “Fish Outta Water,” featuring contemporary tabletop, home décor, and accessories. The exclusive line, with coordinating products from both companies, is designed by artist Lori Siebert of Olika Studios.

The collection features fish imagery on guest and kitchen towels, hooked rugs, photo realistic pillows as well as a throw for C & F Enterprises, Inc. Figurines, wall art and ornaments as well as ceramic serving pieces for entertaining round out the coordinated collection for Gallerie II.

Our Latest Issue is Now Available!

Hello everyone,

What can we say, it has been an amazing year in licensing! We want to thank our loyal followers for all of the support and hope you take a look at our new issue, brought to you in a digital format. Learn all about movie-licensing efforts in our Tribute to Hollywood section and find out what happened this year in our Year in Review.

Again, thanks for all of your support and happy holidays!

Your friends at The Licensing Book

Moxie & Company’s Licensing News

Moxie & Company has new properties available for licensing, including Word Roundup Bingo in the categories interactive and electronic games, board games, and promotions; and GIANTmicrobes in the categories promotional tie-ins and health/personal care products.

Moxie & Company has also granted several licenses recently, including Nancy Drew to Her Interactive for “Mobile Mystery” game apps for the iPad; Funbrain to KiwiTech USA for educational game apps for iPad; Funbrain to StickerYou for online and retail personalized stickers; Alphabet Animals to Odyssey Books for Quilt-and-book story time sets; Ziggy to StickerYou for online and retail personalized stickers; Sloane Tanen’s “Tanenworks” to CR Gibson for journals, calendars, notecards, mugs, stationery, and gifts; Olive Sandwiches to MeadWestvaco for 2012 calendars; Olive Sandwiches to Joanna Sheen Ltd for crafts; Diamond Crosswords to Perfect Timing for 2012 page-a-day calendar; and Stone Soup to Habitat for Humanity for spokescharacter tie-in with Habitat for Humanity worldwide.

Moxie has moved, here is the company’s new address:

993 Post Road East
Westport, CT 06880
(203) 259-2729

Barney Launches App Worldwide for Apple iPhone and iPod Touch

HIT Entertainment has launched a new Barney mobile app, “Barney’s Super-Dee-Duper Fun Day!” for the iPhone and iPod Touch. With the new app, developed by Blit Interactive, users can play three new games: Wonderful World of Shapes; Lookie Lookie, It’s a Cookie Cookie; and Silly Hats. The games feature Barney, BJ, and Baby Bop and some of Barney’s most popular songs. The app can be purchased at the Apple App Store worldwide.

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