Licensing Works!®, the North American licensing agent for Paris-based Millimages, a leader in the children’s entertainment industry, is expanding its latest preschool-to-teen property, MOLANG.
Scholastic Inc., the world’s largest publisher and distributor of children’s books, will introduce a MOLANG publishing program with first products in market for back to school 2017. Beginning with 8 x 8 sticker storybooks, Scholastic will follow in 2018 with board books, readers and novelty books available to all national retailers, independents, special market channels, and through Scholastic Reading Club and Scholastic Book Fairs.
Leslie Levine, Owner of Licensing Works!®, said, “We are thrilled with the top-tier licensees across all key product categories that have joined the MOLANG merchandise licensing program. Adding Scholastic is significant since one out of every three children’s books sold in the US is sold by Scholastic with an outstanding penetration into classrooms, adding to MOLANG’s already deep demographic reach.”
“We are pleased to be adding MOLANG, an adorable preschool program, to our publishing program of licensed brands,” said Lynn Smith, Director of Global Licensing, Scholastic Trade Publishing. “MOLANG’s messages of happiness, friendship and mutual respect are a perfect fit for Scholastic.”
International Emmy®-award-nominated MOLANG is the story of a gentle rabbit and a scatterbrained chick who enjoy a unique friendship and share humorous and fun adventures together. The property was created in 2010 via the personal blog of Korean creator Hye-Ji Yoon. It rapidly achieved popularity through a series of instant messaging apps in South Korea. In 2013, Millimages signed to handle MOLANG and to translate the property into an animated series.
MOLANG and friends speak a universal language, which is understood by all and, as a result, requires no dubbing or subtitling. The series became a huge success and is already broadcast in over 200 countries around the world with major broadcasters including Disney Junior, Canal+, Cartoonito and BBC Kids.
The ratings have been excellent since the initial airings began February 2016 on Disney Junior and the Disney Junior Block on Disney Channel. After the first quarter, Disney shared that 46% of children aged two to five had seen at least one episode of MOLANG. Quickly amassing over 100 million unique views, Disney picked up a second season of MOLANG. Disney also airs MOLANG outside the U.S. in Australia, throughout Latin America, Italy, Germany, Southeast Asia, Korea and Japan.
The digital world where MOLANG originated is also proving highly successful. Viewers have been able to see episodes online via the Disney App since December 2015 and, to date, there have been 34 million views of the 16 available MOLANG episodes with 1.3 million unique viewers. Proving the success of the property, Disney reports engagement and repeat viewings are high with over 20 videos seen per person based on only 16 individual videos that are available online.
MOLANG’s Facebook account issues a new dedicated post each day and has more than 70,000 likes. On YouTube, there is a new video each week and MOLANG achieves on average 500,000 views per day with more than 20 million views in the last few months. MOLANG also tweets each day and has 1600 subscribers on Pinterest, with a new image being uploaded daily. Instagram features one dedicated post every day with over 9,000 subscribers. All together MOLANG’s social media reaches over 130,000 fans with a +50% increase in a four-month period.
With the property proving to be so successful, the licensing program is growing significantly. In addition to Scholastic, Bioworld is joining the program with a line of teen targeted apparel and sleepwear. Also newly added North American DVD partner, NCircle will release their first MOLANG product for Fall 2017 timed with other key MOLANG licensee product releases. Previously announced US licensees include: master toy licensee, Jazwares, shipping figures, plush and play sets in stores Fall 2017, master bedding licensee, Jay Franco for bed and bath linen, master children’s apparel licensee, Children’s Apparel Network for toddler, boy and girl apparel ranges, outerwear and swimwear, Komar will debut sleepwear; Intimo will introduce girls underwear; Berkshire Fashions will launch headwear and cold weather accessories; Accessory Innovations will debut bags, cases, luggage and small leather goods, Riley Blake will produce fabric, embellishments and fabric kit products.
Licensing Works!® is actively seeking interactive game partners to replicate this great success MOLANG has experienced in France along with the mobile success experienced by the series creator in Asia. The preschool-targeted MOLANG app available on IOS and Google has already seen 100,000 downloads in France with 1 million sessions and an average engagement time of over 12 minutes.
In addition to interactive and digital opportunities, Licensing Works!® is seeking MOLANG partners for consumables, HBA, footwear, party goods, stationery, back to school supplies, board games and puzzles, costumes, watches, hair accessories, gifts, ride-ons, live touring shows and promotions.
Laurence Papon, Head of Licensing for Millimages is spearheading the licensing program worldwide and has appointed a number of territory agents. In addition to Licensing Works for North America, Licensing Link handles the UK, Mediogen represents Israel and 0 Plus Media deals for Russia and CIS.
In Europe, Tomy has been appointed master toy licensee and will also cover Australia and New Zealand with a wide range of figurines, plush and playsets. Flammarion has launched a first collection of five MOLANG books worldwide in the French language accompanied by a special MOLANG display in both book stores and specialty stores in a cross promotion with French broadcaster Piwi + including an on-air competition and a social media campaign. There are also promotional flyers in every MOLANG DVD box. Two more books have just been released for Easter and two additional will be available for summer 2017. In addition, Millimages has signed a partnership with the Charles de Gaulle and Orly Paris airports. From now through April, 2018, young travelers will be entertained in all kids’ areas by their favorite characters, MOLANG and Piu Piu with episodes playing on tablets that also include the MOLANG game application.
Papon said, “We are delighted to see how quickly MOLANG is expanding around the world! The license was launched in North America at last Licensing Expo in Las Vegas and, one year later, thanks to the great work of the Licensing Works! team, we are celebrating a full roster of partners including the biggest publisher worldwide”, Laurence continued.