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BULLDOG’S PORTFOLIO OF LEADING BRANDS SET TO TAKE CENTRE STAGE AT THE FESTIVAL OF LICENSING

5 Oct - 2020

Agency’s diverse roster features classic, evergreen brands alongside fresh new properties

Showcasing its carefully selected range of licensors, leading European agency, Bulldog Licensing, is set to demonstrate its ability to develop and enhance consumer products programmes which are fit for purpose in the highly competitive world of licensing, at this year’s new Festival of Licensing.

From classic favourites such as Sesame Street, Care Bears, LIFE and That’s Not My… to recent exciting additions to the Bulldog family including Rolling Stone, Zafari and Holly Hobbie, the agency’s virtual stand is set to be a busy, much-anticipated addition to the show.

38 year-old children’s animation icon, Care Bears, has seen strong sales in its adult offering recently, due to high fashion collaborations with Dolls Kill, Irregular Choice and Tikiboo. A popular new range from Bershka is also among the major collections now available at High Street retailers, as part of the cross-category programme rolling out, featuring apparel, accessories and home. The children’s programme is underpinned by strong ratings for the Unlock the Magic show, airing on Tiny Pop, which outperforms the channel average by nearly 50 per cent. This content will soon be bolstered by new music videos being released by digital partner, Moonbug.

Basic Fun recently joined the licensees for the cute bears from cloud-filled Care-A-Lot as the Master Toy partner. The range which initially launched in the US has seen phenomenal sales, and the later launch in the UK, has also seen a strong start, with impressive sales supported by a heavyweight marketing campaign. The remarkable response has led to major commitments from UK retail into spring 2021 and beyond. Basic Fun is now in the enviable position of needing to carefully manage stock levels due to initial shortages.

Holly Hobbie is a modern revival of the classic character brand, brought to life by teen actress, singer and social media sensation Ruby Jay. The live-action TV series is drawing huge audiences on CBBC, which sees the brand in the top echelons of the viewing figures for both linear and digital streams and exclusive content on iPlayer. A new deal with Pogo will see product apparel and accessories, alongside a dedicated webshop for the brand.

Alongside the new-look TV series, a major collection of gifting and celebrations products is now available through Clinton’s stores, targeting fans of the nostalgic ‘60s greeting card brand by featuring the original Holly Hobbie painted artwork. Although briefly interrupted by the COVID19 lockdown, sales have been spectacular with new lines in development for Spring 2021 to satisfy consumer demand.

Also from the Care Bears Licensor, the eponymous Boy Girl Dog Cat Mouse Cheese is delivering huge ratings on is CBBC home and is even appearing in the channels iPlayer advertising programme. Bulldog is now in conversation with a number of potential licensees covering publishing, apparel and plush lines ahead of its debut at Festival of Licensing.

Kindi Kids’ popularity among pre-schoolers continues apace with the brand sitting firmly in the top spot for large dolls in the UK. This top-selling property from Moose Toys is tipped to be a key driver in the competitive preschool sector throughout 2021, and the licensor has a major digital content plan in place to continue to grow the staggering 45 million views on YouTube to date. New webisodes are now in development following the adventures of the cute kindergarten students.

Named as winner of the Hero Toy Category at London Toy Fair this year, Kindi Kids boasts nine out of the top 30 selling items in large dolls so far in 2020, and a cross category consumer products programme featuring publishing, home, toys and stationery, based on the quirky, colourful and fun bobble headed dolls will launch from A/W 2020.

The new year brings you more of what you love with your favourite furry friends Elmo, Cookie Monster, and the rest of the gang. With four programmes airing on commercial broadcaster Tiny Pop, the iconic brand Sesame Street is bringing laughter and learning to kids throughout the UK. Children will enjoy new feature and basic plush from Posh Paws, while adults will find a wide range of apparel and accessories across major retailers throughout 2021, complementing the already-strong sales of apparel, homeware and gifting lines.

Miraculous: Tales Of Ladybug And Cat Noir has been a consistent top performer in the UK for both Pop and Disney Channels since its launch, and is one of the UK’s top-rated kids TV shows.   Three seasons of the series are currently on air in the UK with seasons four and five in production. And, according to Parrot Analytics, audience demand for Miraculous in the UK over the past 30 days is 17.6 times the demand of the average TV series. Just 2.7% of all shows in this market have this level of demand.

Coming soon across the globe are two big-budget animated TV movies, Miraculous World – New York – United HeroeZ and Miraculous World – Shanghai – Lady Dragon, which will be available on Disney Channel and Disney+ who have acquired global rights (except for Brazil and China);  France’s TF1, Brazil’s Gloob (Grupo Globo), Canada’s Family Channel & Télé-Québec and UK’s POP.  Created by ZAG and produced by ZAG and ON kids & family (Mediawan Group), the 3D-CGI-animated TV movies are directed by Thomas Astruc. The brand’s first event movie with a US$70M budget will hit screens from around Autumn 2021/Spring 2022.

The strong sales from fashion lines, nightwear, HBA and accessories are set to be bolstered by Bandai’s exciting new toy collection in October, which will be supported with heavyweight marketing, alongside a much-expanded licensing programme launching in UK retail over the next year to excite the army of fans.

Empowering and inspirational, Miraculous embraces values for the entire family and has become a digital planetary craze with over 19 billion views on YouTube (authorized and user-generated content).  Miraculous airs in over 120 countries across the globe and is the winner of 15 awards.

New to Bulldog’s portfolio is the prestigious Rolling Stone magazine / brand – leading resource for music, culture and politics for the last 53 years – which enjoys over a million unique website visitors from the UK each month. The licensing programme in the US is already established across apparel, games and puzzles, publications, and even beer. Print & digital versions of Rolling Stone are available in Germany, Italy and France. The European licensing programme, which launched more recently is already in development with a wide-reaching apparel range, featuring music iconography and the legendary logo. Bulldog is in discussion with licensees for Rolling Stone across categories including gift, accessories, stationery, wall art and home.

ROUTE 66 has a well-established licensing programme throughout the world and product launched in the UK in late 2019, following an apparel agreement with Brand Alliance. And it seems that consumers are indeed, as the song suggests, getting their kicks on ROUTE 66, as the product sales have been phenomenal across the High Street and grocery channels. So much so in fact, that the range will now expand to include accessories as well. Bulldog Licensing, which manages the rights for ROUTE 66 in the UK, has recently secured a deal with car supplies specialist Assured Products, which is set to include cleaning fluids and lubricants, launching in 2021. The agency is also now in discussion with a range of potential licensees across gift, accessories, stationery, wall art and home.

With its photo library featuring defining moments of the 21st century, LIFE has experienced strong sales across fashion and home lines in particular, with ranges from Park Agencies, Pyramid and Dreamtex performing very well. The LIFE catalogue, which features over  10 million images, is being increasingly curated to focus on key themes such as humour, festivals, civil and women’s rights, and the recently launched environmental range, which feature images of the natural world on sustainably sourced product, that proved a huge hit when it launched in March.

Gifting favourite for newborn babies, That’s Not My… is the UK’s biggest-selling baby book series and is also proving a huge hit across licensed ranges including top-selling babywear range from Dennicci. The toy range from Rainbow brings to life the loveable characters such as the unicorn, bunny, monkey and flamingo from the much-loved touchy-feely books, with a range of comforters and plush and recently received nominations for both a 2020 Licensing Award and a Progressive Preschool Award. Bedding from Dreamtex has also proved popular, while Widdop Bingham will soon launch a gifting range featuring nursery products set to be a favourite in nursery décor everywhere.

Betty Boop, Popeye, Flash Gordon, Phantom and videogame, Cuphead make up the impressive brand portfolio from King Features and together provide a wealth of opportunities for Bulldog to build upon with the licensing programme. As retailers place emphasis on classic brands to provide a sense of familiarity to shoppers during uncertain times, the offerings for Betty Boop, Flash Gordon and Popeye are rapidly expanding with significant ranges of apparel and accessories going into UK retail from early 2021 whilst the much-anticipated launch of the Cuphead TV show in 2021 is fuelling growth in the related licensing programme.

Diversity and the natural world are the key themes running throughout Zafari and they are driving a strong audience on Tiny Pop. The animation, which tells the story of a unique group of animals, who are born with the skin of other species, is now being discussed across a number of product categories including apparel, accessories, publishing and toys. Initial lines are expected to reach UK retail by the middle of next year.

Rob Corney, MD, Bulldog Licensing, comments: “With such a strong roster of properties, we are delighted to be able to exhibit at the new virtual Festival of Licensing this year, and present these fabulous and diverse opportunities to existing and new licensees. We pride ourselves in offering brands which really work in the highly competitive licensing industry and offer our clients a retail-first approach to create programmes which really work.”

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