Page 1



FROM THE EDITOR 2020 marks the beginning of a new decade and as the industry comes together for the Melbourne Toy Hobby & Licensing Fair, it is obvious that the changing face of our business requires serious re-evaluation. The current environmental disruption and commercial challenges currently being experienced in Australia are something that must be addressed for the longer term and at the same time they will continue to impact on our lives and businesses, now and into the future. We need strong leadership and measured decision making in this country to provide stability to grow. For the toy and licensing businesses, the current coronavirus outbreak is a reminder of how reliant we all are on continuity in everything we do. We must give some thought to developing other options that will allow some choice when things don’t go according to plan. The supply chain dilemma, which currently faces the toy industry out of China, is a perfect example. Looking ahead, there are many new trends emerging that must be addressed if we are to build a sustainable new model. These trends include: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Less is more and value is very important How do brands remain relevant in the face of extreme environmental challenges and changing commercial forces? Understanding demographics is essential Establishing a direct connection with the consumer will become essential as online shopping increases What is your value proposition to the end user?

The bricks and mortar squeeze has not just appeared in recent times, it has been happening behind the scenes for years. High rents, lack of will to embark upon change and the emergence of a more savvy consumer has combined to force many retailers out of business. Along with changing demographics we see that smaller niche businesses will proliferate and they will be able to tap into the purchasing patterns of a new consumer and be nimble enough to provide products & services that are highly focused and targeted to their audience. In addition to all of the above, consolidation of our industry to produce larger operators will continue with a good example being the recent merger of TPG and Vodafone, which will create a much larger organisation and allow them to compete with Telstra and Optus. Finally the race for supremacy in owning content is also gathering momentum. The recent launch of Disney + is a perfect example of Disney seeking to develop new revenue models for their business. In the future it seems likely that Apple with its huge cash reserves will also seek to purchase content portfolios from one of the major players to allow them to offer greater choice to their customer.


Editor & Designer

Tony Bugg

Matthew Bugg



Published by Bugg Marketing Solutions

Advertising: bookings@buggreport.com.au


Feedback: editor@buggreport.com.au

PO BOX 491, Berwick VIC 3806

Media: media@buggreport.com.au

The Bugg Report has been compiled as a guide to retail, sports, lifestyle, toys, licensing and/or other related matters. The views and opinions provided are based upon the views and opinions of our writers. In no way is The Bugg Report a factual guide to retail, sports, lifestyle, toys, licensing and/or other related matters and does not take responsibility for how the information provided is used by its consumers.



INSIDE THIS EDITION 04. Feature Interview — Haven Global 30. Market Wrap — BBC Studios 36. Feature Interview — Universal Brand Development 38. Market Wrap — The Wiggles 40. Feature Interview — the emoji company 52. Market Wrap — Merchantwise Licensing 73. Feature Interview — Toy Networx 76. Feature Interview — Popcultcha 79. Feature Article — Squatter 81. Market Wrap — Jasnor Australia 83. Market Wrap — U.Games Australia 85. Feature Article — According to Downsey 87. Feature Article — 2020 Marketing Predictions 89. Feature Article — Sally Pseudonym 91. Feature Article — Wide Eyes News from the Tube





HAVEN TRULY GLOBAL! Apart from Haven’s amazing Australian & New Zealand business, we understand that they have been actively ramping up some global brands. To understand more, we asked Tom and Yvonne from Haven more about what they’ve got going on in international markets. TOM — We are thrilled to be at the forefront of the new content revolution for kids. YouTube is fundamentally changing the way that kids consume content and brands are emerging from that space all over the world. It doesn’t matter what country they’re based in, if the brands resonate with kids they hit an immediate global audience. Kids have become their own programmers and are choosing what they love. YVONNE — It’s a whole new world. It’s not about where kids see their content it’s about how many kids see the content. Total content consumption is where it’s all at. Whether it’s on TikTok, YouTube, free-to-air TV, subscription TV, streaming services, gaming channels or apps – if the kids love the brands then the opportunity is there for the biggest of them to extend their footprint into the consumer products space.

TOM — First cab off the rank for us is CKN Toys, a global YouTube phenomenon with over 13 billion views, based out of Sydney, Australia. Calvin & Kaison are two brothers that unbox and play with all the toys that kids love & they’ve hit a note with fans worldwide. We created this brand from the ground up – we developed the logo, into a styleguide into a consumer products program, launching April this year. We’ve done a TV deal with Nickelodeon for an all new series that will debut in Australia & the United Kingdom in April, we’ve forged a partnership with Jazwares who have created the most fantastic boy play master toy line. We have a global app launching, apparel in the United States... the list goes on. And we are thrilled to have partnered with Nickelodeon UK to represent us in the United Kingdom & Europe.

YVONNE — In another space entirely we’ll be launching a global program around the most gorgeous brand – Meddy Teddy, the yoga and mindfulness bear, who is poised to be the pre-eminent brand in the kid’s wellness space. The Dalai Lama once said, “if every 8 year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation�. Meddy’s mission is to take his skills to kids globally by teaching them to find calm by going within, and finding peace and balance in an ever changing stressful world. As of the date of writing, we are finalising negotiations with a leading global toyco to take Meddy Teddy to the world across a wonderful range of plush, figurines & collectibles. A creation of three brothers, who are experts in the field of yoga and meditation, Meddy Teddy is backed by a vast array of authentic content. And, we are having discussions across a whole gamut of categories including publishing, gifting, yoga wear & a global app. You’ve got to check out www.meddyteddy.com, or the Instagram page @meddyteddy, it will calm your day





TOM — The next of the global YouTube phenomenons for Haven is Vlad and Nikita, two globetrotting brothers, who boast an amazing 33 million subscribers, and over 15 Billion views. The two boys are supported by their wonderful parents, posting fun, busy, and exciting videos of their adventures and crazy activities. Gaining well over ONE BILLION views per month, Vlad and Nikita are a global hit with kids, and we are planning lots of activity around the brand for 2020. Haven inked the global merchandise deal with the fabulous talent in October 2019, and after developing their creative assets will be actively pitching to master toy and content partners at New York Toy Fair, so watch this space.

YVONNE — In other exciting news, we’ve just finalised our partnership with Like A Photon, a fast growing & multi-awardwinning Australian production company who are creating a film franchise around “Tales from Sanctuary City”. These beautifully animated films bring to life through beautiful CGI, the story of an eclectic mix of characters who through their adventures tell a majestic, multicultural story of survival in a planet under constant threat. The first film Wishmas Trees releases February 28th, with the second story “Combat Wombat” hitting cinemas Q3 this year, building up to the 2021 release of “Daisy Quokka – World’s Scariest Animal”. Great stories & great humour are going to make this a franchise worth investing in for the long term & we see huge opportunity across toys & games, collectibles, publishing & homewares.

THE BUGG REPORT — That sounds huge! TOM — It sure is, we’re so excited, we’ve staffed up and got the expert resources we need to maximise all of our fabulous brands, both locally and internationally.



tent n o C al TV Origin Partner unch a l t s ca Broad ril 2020 Ap

ter s a M al tner b o l G a r ch P y o n T y Lau To l 2020 Apri

CKN Toys™ © 2020 CKN Australia Pty. All Rights Reserved.

Join the adventure with Calvin and Kaison as CKN Toys grows globally as THE Pre-School brand! F O R M O R E I N F O R M A T I O N C O N T A C T: ANNA DUPREE at ANNA@HAVENGLOBAL.COM or +61 439 818 352

Australian based YouTube channel features two brothers, Calvin (8 yrs) & Kaison (4 yrs), who road-test the best toys in the world. These mowhawk rocking, superhero smashing, content creators have over 13 Billion views globally, and are ready to launch a television series, toys, App and consumer products in 2020.



20 x 5 min episodes

13.2B+ views globally 14M Subscribers 268M+ total views in Australia to date #1 Australian YouTuber*

Calvin & Kaison star in a live action ‘Everyday Hero’ adventure series Broadcast launch

Only Australian channel in the World Top 50 Ranking*

April 2020

*At time of print (5/2/2020)

TOYS “Calvin and Kaison’s adventurous spirit and unique way of connecting with kids around the world, made them a perfect fit. We’re thrilled to bring them to aisles globally in alignment with Nickelodeon’s content schedule”. - Laura Zebersky, CCO, Jazwares

y shelves Hitting to ustralia, ,A across UK h US to it w Asia ril 2020 launch Ap

“The toy line looks amazing and is a uniquely collaborative effort between Jazwares and the two brothers (Calvin and Kaison), resulting in toys made by kids for kids”, - Tom Punch, Managing Director, Haven lia

2020 in Austra

April: Jazwares Toys launch Nickelodeon TV Series launch GLOBAL App launch May: CKN Toys™ © 2020 CKN Australia Pty. All Rights Reserved.

Softlines at Retail


25 YEARS IN 2021









346+million Video Games sold worldwide

The Pokémon TCG is one of the most popular trading card games in the world and has been shipped to 77 countries and regions in 13 languages

Pokémon Sword and Shield fastest-selling Nintendo Switch games of all time.




animated TV episdoes;


22 Seasons

Pokemon Go

downloads for


· · ·





©2020 The Pokémon Company International. TM, ®Nintendo.




$430+ million at Global Box office

Ranked second on NPD’s top-selling DVD and Blu-ray discs in August 2019











Peter Alexander - 59 SKUs cross-category

Melbourne Central

50 Years & Counting Art Exhibition

50 local and international artists reimagine 50 of the most iconic and beloved Sesame Street characters in this three-month long exhibition.

Sesame Street Circus Spectacular Showtime x Silvers Circus launched in Melbourne with over ½ million dollars in sales across one month of shows! Travelling Australia throughout 2020.


Resin brooches, most successful launch ever!


Target - Tickle & Glow Elmo Australia Post - Retro Tickle Me Elmo Big W - 50th Anniversary Range DIANA MARKEZIC at DIANA@HAVENGLOBAL.COM or +61 3 9015 6602











PRIMARK U.K. Primark launched their 3rd L.O.L. Surprise collection to celebrate Winter Disco. Apparel - Stationery - Hair Accessories - Sleepwear - Outerwear

TM & © 2020 Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. All Rights Reserved.

read, the more things you will know. u o y t e tha h r o m The more t at you learn, the more places you’ll go. The


TM & © 2020 Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. All Rights Reserved.

More books sold in Australia per capita, than anywhere else in the world!!! TELEVISION


A never-before-published Dr. Seuss book about creating and looking at art!


streaming on Netflix

Text TM & copyright © Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. 2019. Illustrations copyright © 2019 by Andrew Joyner. All Rights Reserved.


coming in 2020



Retailers love Dr. Seuss! Locally Peter Alexander, Big W, Target, Best & Less, Kmart, Jay Jays, David Jones, TRS, Dymocks and QBD Books. Internationally Hanna Andersson, Kohl’s Walmart, Pottery Barn, Primark, Macy’s, Forever 21, Williams-Sonoma, Target

Steal Grinchmas this year for the whole family!

and many more...



Key Categories




For over 45 years, Hello Kitty has gifted smiles and love to fans and followers around the world!









gudetama is always downcast because of the fate that awaits it, that of being eaten. gudetama is devoid of any get-up-and-go.





Aggretsuko is a 25-year-old red panda working in a Tokyo company. She thought it was her dream job – it isn’t. She works hard but her boss keeps piling the work on her and her colleagues. It’s verging on ridiculous. At the end of a long day, Aggretsuko rages and rocks out to death metal at her local karaoke!



Fans of Sanrio and Anime Millennials and Gen X All genders

Seasons 1 & 2 streaming now Season 2 launched June 2019 Global release - 10 episodes Available in 23 languages Season 3 launching in 2020

A heritage brand, with a contemporary following.


2020 is set to be full of character… as we celebrate 60 years of Sanrio! Hello Kitty together with all of her friends will take centre stage all throughout 2020 to celebrate Sanrio’s 60th Anniversary! Little Twin Stars, My Melody, Keroppi and Bad Badtz-Maru are just a few of the Sanrio Characters that fans will see pop up throughout the year across digital channels and at retail. CA M SH PAIG O N TO T IN KY O

75% sell-thru after just 48 hours of launch!




AN ICONIC BRAND OF DIVERSITY ENJOYED BY GENERATIONS MR. MEN ISS LITTLE M Australian brand Walnut Melbourne launched their delightfully refreshing Mr. Men Little Miss Summer Resort Collection - featuring 36 SKUs of footwear, apparel and accessories! In true Walnut style, the team reworked beloved Mr. Men Little Miss characters into an underwater fantasy that included both mermaids and mer-boys!

Rockefeller Productions launched a brand new adaptation of Roger Hargreaves much loved book series Mr. Men & Little Miss Live On Stage! For the very first time, fans can join their favourite Mr. Men and Little Miss characters as they leap off the page and onto the stage – as puppets! Shows launched in the UK and Asia in 2019, with plans to launch in Australia soon!

A brand for all ages & categories KIDSWEAR


Celebrating in 2021



Educational Exploration Trusted Nostalgic Colourful Encouragement Creative Timeless ™ & © EC


50 YEARS OF PUBLISHING HERITAGE! #3 Kids Book in Dymocks Top 51 Kids books as voted by Australians in 2019!

Australian Friends title launched Oct 2019 #1 selling TVHC title during first week of launch!

MELBOURNE BASED BOUTIQUE Boutique kids clothing brand - Minti Melbourne will launch their much anticipated TVHC Winter Range! Using not only the TVHC, Minti will incorporate other beloved Eric Carle characters in their uber-cool signature designs!


The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show New shows touring Australia late 2020!


The Smurfs are ambassadors of the 17 United Nations sustainable development goals and want to be involved in looking after our planet!







NEW STYLE GUIDE AVAILABLE USE OF THE SMURF LOGO FOR MERCHANDISING COMMUNICATION AND PRO Without prejudice to Licensee’s obligation to submit any use of the Smurf assets for JUNE 2020  Licensing partners shall use the following NEW logo: in the local language


 The Smurf logo may be used together (side by side) with other logos but it m to other logos and the size of the Smurf logo must be minimum as big as the

 For all packaging, communication, promotional material and others, Licensin use the following mentions:  in the local language   The copyright mention:  Standard:



With space limitation:

With very limited space (subject to IMPS authorization) : – 2020 – LiC. I.M.P.S. (Brussels) – www.smurf.com


 An english version of the content of all written or oral communication imply the Smurfs shall also be submitted to Licensor’s approval.

OCTONAUTS™ Meomi Design Inc. OCTONAUTS © 2020 Vampire Squid Productions Ltd.


THE OCTONAUTS are a team of undersea explorers who are always ready for new adventures.




© Frederick Warne & Co. Limited and Silvergate PPL Limited, 2020. All rights reserved.

A timeless classic, brought to life in an adventure packed TV series. More than 2 million Beatrix Potter books are sold across the world every year! Peter Rabbit has appeared in books and products in more than 110 countries around the world. The Tale of Peter Rabbit has never been out of print since it was first published in 1902. © Frederick Warne & Co., 2020






Largest Octonauts attraction worldwide opening in Sea Life Shanghai June 2020

JASNOR AUSTRALIA ABC KIDS Octonauts & Peter Rabbit Animation airs once a day everyday!


Brings the adventurous Peter Rabbit TV characters to life in a range of toys, including play sets, playing cards, puzzles and plush toys!

NEW RETAILER! Kmart launching more infant apparel styles in 2020!

Peter Alexander Myer & David Jones The Warehouse Baby Factory Baby Bunting

ERSTWILDER COLLECTION OF 12 DESIGNS 3 styles sold out within 1st hour of launch.. Almost all styles sold out after 3 weeks! SECOND RANGE COMING EASTER 2020!




Australia’s favourite Heeler pup

As seen on ABC kids & TVNZ 2

#1 children’s Nominated for an International Emmy® Kids Award

Bluey books & toys ranked as bestselling items for Christmas 2019

series of 2019 2

170 million views on iview

Winner of Logie and AACTA awards!


The most watched program in ABC iview’s history

New lines launching in 2020 with

best-in-class partners

First ever live tour ‘Bluey’s Big Play’ Launching nationally May 2020


Global broadcast deal with Disney Excluding Australia, New Zealand and Greater China*

Source: Oz TAM VPM Program Plays (Begin Event), 2018 – 2019 (1st Jan – 30th Nov and excluding Ep 52) Metro broadcast television in Australia. Source: OzTAM (5 City Metro) Consolidated


*Greater China including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan BLUEY TM and BLUEY character logos TM & © Ludo Studio Pty Ltd 2018

Another big year for smash hit

Home-grown animated series Bluey continues to win hearts across Australia and the world. A smash hit with families, Bluey has been widely praised for its joyous yet honest portrayal of young family life. In the last 12 months it has become one of Australia’s most popular children’s brands with BBC Studios securing a number of major deals and partnerships. The highlyanticipated launch of Bluey products at the end of 2019 highlighted the brand’s growing popularity in Australia. With products slated for 2020 and beyond, expect more exciting news from Australia’s favourite Heeler family. Bluey follows the adventures of a loveable, inexhaustible six-year old Blue Heeler dog who loves to play and turn everyday life into extraordinary adventures. Since launching in October 2018 on ABC KIDS, the series has gone from strength to strength; it was the number one children’s series of 2019 on broadcast television in Australia* and is the most watched program in ABC iview’s history, with over 170 million views**. The series also picked up a Logie Award for ‘Most Outstanding Children’s Program’ and an AACTA Award for ‘Best Children’s Program’. Bluey went global in 2019, securing a global distribution deal with Disney, which saw the series premiere internationally on Disney Junior. In early 2020, the series launched on streaming service Disney+ in US and Canada, and will soon become available in all territories outside of Australia, New Zealand and Greater China. The series is also nominated for an International Emmy® Kids Award, highlighting the universal appeal of the distinctively Australian series.

It was also a big year for licensing with BBC Studios announcing a publishing deal with Penguin Random House ANZ and a global toy deal with Moose Toys. The highly-anticipated launch of Bluey toys and books in November sent fans into a frenzy. Both toys and books were listed among the top Christmas gifts for children by numerous media outlets and Bluey books consistently took the top three spots in the weekly Australian Book Charts. In only a few months, approximately 150,000 plush toys and over 400,000 books have been sold. BBC Studios also partnered with iconic Australian brand, Bonds for Bluey’s first apparel range. The Bonds x Bluey collaboration launched in January and included an adorable range of infant and kids clothing. It proved to be a winning combination with the range selling out within

a couple of weeks. Following the success of Bonds x Bluey range, BBC Studios is thrilled to be working with licensee Designworks to bring more Bluey apparel to fans, available across major retailers including Target, BIG W and Kmart from early March. DVDs also proved to be popular among fans. After launching in October, the first two volumes of Bluey DVDs were Universal Sony’s highest performing family titles for 2019. Impact Posters also reported Bluey was the top-selling poster on release across BIG W, Target and other retailers. More DVDs and posters will be released in 2020. Following the success of the first three Bluey books, fans can add to their collection with more books hitting shelves in 2020. Just in time for Easter, Bluey: Bob Bilby and Bluey: Easter Fun, will be available across Australian book stores from early March, with two more exciting books – Bluey: Big Backyard and Bluey: The Creek – set to be published in the coming months.

Moose Toys delighted the fans with the release of Jumbo Best Mate Bingo plush in January and two card games (Bingo’s Bingo Game and 5 in 1 Game Set) in February. In the coming months look out for more adorable plush toys and fun ranges of Blueyinspired playsets and games hitting Australian stores, including the Bluey Shadowlands Board Game, based on the fun adventures of Bluey and her friends. The ever-changing and unpredictable game will keep kids entertained for hours.

all Bluey figures. Kids will love to recreate some of the most memorable moments from the show with these adorable toys. BBC Studios is delighted to work with more partners in 2020. Keep an eye out for personalised products (Stuck On You), footwear and bedding (Caprice), stationery, arts and crafts products (Hunter Leisure), lunchware (Zak), seasonal confectionery (Kinnerton) and puzzles (MJM). This Easter will also see the debut of Bluey-licensed showbags with partner Bensons. Fans can also look forward to the second series premiering on ABC KIDS and iview this year. The Heeler family are also hitting the road with Bluey’s first live show, Bluey’s Big Play, touring to over 50 theatres across Australia, starting in May 2020. Bluey and Bingo costume characters are also popping up around the country thrilling fans with the chance to meet their favourite heeler pups. It’s shaping up to be another incredible year for Bluey! *Source: OzTAM (5 City Metro) Consolidated **Source: Oz TAM VPM Program Plays (Begin Event), 2018 – 2019 (1st Jan – 30th Nov and excluding Ep 52)

Also guaranteed to be at the top of any fans’ wish list is the Heeler 4WD – the perfect car to go on family adventures, like a trip to the beach. The Heeler 4WD comes with 2 surfboards that are compatible with

BLUEY TM and BLUEY character logos TM & © Ludo Studio Pty Ltd 2018










Read us on issuu



Universal Brand Development Thank you for speaking with The Bugg Report. As an introduction, can you tell us about Universal Brand Development? Universal Brand Development (UBD) was established four years ago with the objective of building brands and expanding consumer engagement around the world. We are fuelled by our creative content partners Universal Pictures, Illumination, DreamWorks and NBCUniversal and we have an incredibly diverse and powerful portfolio that reflects the modern world around us. From immersive experiences to designer collaborations – it’s about curating the best partners for the right activation and tapping into our local culture. We’ve also grown the organisation 10-fold over the last 3 years, from a single office in North America to 14 offices covering 22 countries – of which, excitingly includes us! In my opinion, we have secured the best team in the business to continue us on our local growth trajectory.

I agree, 2020 is going to be a big year with the release of DreamWorks Animation’s Trolls World Tour later this month. What can we expect to see? The Trolls franchise has grown to become one of the largest global entertainment brands. Australians can’t get enough and the highly anticipated sequel; DreamWorks Animation’s Trolls World Tour will be landing in Australian cinemas 26 March and New Zealand cinemas 2 April. We kicked off our consumer products launch with a media event on World Hug Day and the results were phenomenal. Our media pick up reached 290 million and included celebrity attendance from the likes of David Warner. All-new toys and lifestyle collections are now taking over local retail shelves and we are thrilled to have new innovative partners on board; cumulating to a local cross category collection of +300 SKUs. Beyond the film release, we will continue to excite girls with our hit TV series on Netflix, a new cross-category consumer products program to support second half including the DVD new release, original digital always on content and shopping mall offerings from Showtime Attractions. And that’s just 2020.

UNIVERSAL IS A CHALLENGER BRAND We’re looking for innovation at every turn and that is fuelling our rapid growth. We are increasing our investment in content, connection and product to propel us forward into our next phase of expansion. 2020 is going to be our biggest year yet, where we will demonstrate that the greatest stories truly are Universal.



And in the year of sequels, I’ve heard the Minions are back for Minions: The Rise of Gru. It’s been 10 years since the first Despicable Me movie released, so what is going to excite fans this time around? In partnership with Illumination, we will launch the most curated and innovative global consumer products program for this franchise later next month. Locally, we’re thrilled to have strong anchor partners

Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous, an all-new animated series from Universal Pictures, DreamWorks Animation Television and Amblin Entertainment, coming to Netflix second half 2020. Mattel will be launching new toys, plus we will have cross category and promotional partners. LEGO Jurassic World: Legend of Isla Nublar will continue to air on Nickelodeon and 9GO! next month and looking ahead at 2021, we will have the third instalment in the Jurassic World film series releasing in June. We have many more roarsome announcements to come, so watch this space!

THE DESPICABLE ME AND MINIONS FRANCHISE IS THE HIGHEST GROSSING ANIMATED FRANCHISE OF ALL TIME such as Mattel, LEGO, Just Play, Caprice, Colgate-Palmolive, Hunter Leisure, ZAK!, Parmalat and Scholastic to name a few that will deliver new innovative product. Also be on the look out as we take over grocery shelves. Digitally, our mobile game Minion Rush will continue to drop new content. It is one of the most downloaded games of all-time, with more than 900 million and counting. Not many brands can make this statement, but it shows that our Minions are standing the test of time. Australians can’t get enough with 83% of kids 5-12 having viewed at least one movie and 84% of generals 13-54 having heard of the franchise. Minions are a pop cultural phenomenon. The much-anticipated sequel Minions: The Rise of Gru, lands in Australian cinemas 18 June and New Zealand cinemas 25 June. Dinosaurs seem to be all the trend and have heightened since the release of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom in 2018. Is there still the story to tell?

Jo, are there any other properties we should keep an eye on? There sure are. DreamWorks Spirit: Riding Free has expanded rapidly from a Netflix TV series to a cross category licensing program at retail. With viewership growth expanding since our launch on ABC ME, we recently announced a feature film inspired by Spirit: Riding Free, coming to cinemas in 2021. DreamWorks Dragons will celebrate its 10th anniversary which allows fans to get deeper into the Dragon world. The team at Spin Master will release brand new toys and we have new seasons and specials from our animated series DreamWorks Dragons: Rescue Riders on Netflix for our younger fans. The Ninth Chapter in the Fast & Furious saga hits Australian cinemas 21 May and we will launch a new line of toys with partners Mattel, Jada and LEGO. Our brand-new kids and family series from DreamWorks Animation Television and Universal Pictures Fast & Furious: Spy Racers will continue to drop new seasons on Netflix. We are also going back in time to celebrate 35 years of the beloved film franchise; Back to the Future with fans events around the world, anniversary cross category consumer products, theatrical re-releases and digital content. And finally, in 2021; we will bring you more theatrical releases, more TV content, more anniversary celebrations and more local partnerships to unlock opportunities together at retail.

You bet there is! Jurassic World is larger than life and this $5 billion film series delivers a destination for exploration, discovery and epic adventure. We know kids want more content and we’re excited to bring them just that.





THE WIGGLES CELEBRATE! The Wiggles’ 30th Anniversary With broadcast in 190 countries there are so many opportunities ahead for the groups 30th year! In 2021, The Wiggles celebrate their 30th birthday with a special logo which has been created for use across all The Wiggles products and communications. There will be a worldwide celebration of the birthday, starting with an update of The Wiggles documentary, Everybody Clap, Everybody Sing! and their Big Birthday international tour! There will be a range of exciting things, such as the Rewiggled album where contemporary artists do their versions of The Wiggles songs. There will be commemorative products such as coins, retro & contemporary apparel and toys, and many other events and promotional opportunities will exist for license partners and retailers. Wiggles World was first launched at the Dreamworld Theme Park 15 years ago and a huge financial investment will be made to refresh the precinct, including the development of an exciting new ride and the launch of a new Wiggles character show to entertain people from around the world.




The Wiggles Live! 2019 saw The Wiggles perform to over 450,000 people, with 244 shows in Australia & New Zealand and 91 shows in the USA & Canada. In 2020, The Wiggles will perform live concerts right across Australia & New Zealand and from July through to September, 31 cities in Canada and venues across the UK and Ireland. The annual Big Show will be held in November and December.

Broadcast The Wiggles’ World is the new series by The Wiggles which debuts in Australia in March on ABC Kids, with 26x 11min episodes. There’s new people, new places, and of course new songs! The new series will have fans meet The Cartoon Wiggles, which are an animated version of The Wiggles who sing songs about important things toddlers need to know as they grow, such as wearing glasses, road safety, allergies and more. During the first half of 2020, ABC Kids will host; The Wiggles’ World, Wiggle, Wiggle, Wiggle!, Lachy!, Emma Series 1 & 2 and Ready, Steady, Wiggle! in rotation. An enormous volume of children’s entertainment for families. The Wiggles’ video specials this year are Fun & Games where you can go on a bear hunt or dance around the mulberry bush with The Wiggles! which will provide opportunities for new imagery, themes and product ideas for both boys and girls. The release for the second half of the year is about transport, the various ways children and families can travel, and about travelling to different destinations. There will be plenty of trains, planes & big red cars!

Consumer Products


The Wiggles consumer product range actively encourages healthy role play and early childhood activities incorporating music, dance and learning. With over 35 partners worldwide, The Wiggles have broad cross category placement in all retail channels. These licensee and retail partnerships have been strengthened by The Wiggles innovative approach to showcasing their new products & themes to large and very engaged social communities. Many retail promotions were developed over the past year complementing The Wiggles style guides and asset development. These have included; Baby Week (featuring The Little Wiggles), Australian Reading Hour, The Wiggles Toilet Training module and most recently, The Wiggles Here to Help educational book series headlining Big W’s 2.5m Free Books for Kids’ giveaway.

Over the last year The Wiggles have further developed their YouTube Channel, adding fresh bespoke content, playlists collaborations & new series. There will be new Emma dance classes that will tie in with the latest iteration of the ballet barre and mat. There is also storytime with The Wiggles, reading the Here to Help Series of books about pro-social topics and safety. Captain Feathersword will also be throwing his pirate hat into the ring with some fun, new content! The Wiggles YouTube Channel has continued to experience triple digit growth in all areas; 120% growth in watch time, 175% growth in views and 147% growth in subscribers! The USA has quickly become The Wiggles largest subscriber base due to both the size of the audience and also how this market has embraced YouTube as a medium. www.wiggles.com.au





THE EMOJI COMPANY Marco can you tell us a little about your ongoing brand development and protection of your character library and also your new 3D and augmented reality advancement? The emoji company is the owner of the emojiŽ trademark in 100+ jurisdictions all over the world and developed the world´s largest library of protected emojiŽ brand icons and designs for licensing of any kind. Our team of designers that sits on 3 continents proactively creates new content and that of course also includes offering our content in other dimensions, such as in full 3D. This content mostly gets used for marketing campaigns and are ideal for the integration into social media campaigns, for advertisement or function as a base model for characters used in events, attractions or entertainment services such as augmented reality realizations. We have seen a number of high-profile collaborations with your brand including Kiss and BRITTO. Is this method something you will continue to pursue? Brand Collaborations are an efficient tool to add value if the strategic and creative thinking is aligned. In such a case the partnering brands can both benefit from increased awareness and a greater outreach. It allows us to create truly unique and innovative products and to address new target audiences and increase our market share and generate additional revenue. We are generally open in considering high profile collaborations if they make sense.



You launched your first collectable/loyalty program with Aldi in Germany last year. How did this perform? The program was launched in Q3/2019 and was a simultaneous program with both Aldi Sßd and Aldi Nord for the German speaking market. It contained 24 collectible emojiŽ toy collectibles and the option to purchase a collector´s box in the stores. For every ₏ 15 purchase price the consumer received one collectible toy. The program has received a fantastic perception and was supported by a massive marketing campaign throughout all social media channels, by print and outdoor advertisement and by a tremendous TV campaign.

From an Australian standpoint, Merchantwise were able to secure a partnership with Personalised Numberplates in Queensland. From all reports they have been a huge success. Do you have any on going plans in this category? The personalized number plates partnership that Merchantwise has arranged here in Australia truly is an amazing partnership that perfectly underscores the scope of application for the emojiŽ brand and demonstrates the brands potential in business areas way beyond standard licensing categories. In Australia we are going to continue with this partnership while we of course started to research which other countries allow such mechanism. This is something that comes down to local jurisdiction in each country but where ever this is possible we are attempting to make this happen as well. From a local perspective can you highlight your overall activities here in Australia? We’re always excited by the variety, innovation and quality of emoji partnerships that come from Australia and NZ. With the assistance of our local agency Merchantwise we now have more than 15 partners across a diverse array of categories, from apparel, publishing, homewares and automotive products to FMCG and promotions. Fashion has always been a core category, with presence at retailers such as Big W, The Warehouse and Best & Less. Last year we launched the world’s first emoji personalised license plates in Queensland - sales exceeded everyone’s expectations and emojiŽ is now their #1 selling plate. This strong consumer reaction has led to a second wave of designs being released this year. The brand must really resonate with Australian drivers, as we’ve now had multiple success stories in the automotive category - the emojiŽ

air-fresheners from Who-Rae have been our bestselling item downunder! In 2020, our focus is on more FMCG partnerships such as TV advertising campaign with Wrigley’s Eclipse Mints and our new cake decorations with Dr Oetker. In the publishing world, Scholastic is developing new formats for including the first emoji-pedia. We are also working with the Perth Mint to create limited edition emoji® collector coins. We are also excited to launch our new crossover collaborations with the likes of KISS, BRITTO and Atari, to bring something new and fresh to the program. How is the U.S. market for you? The U.S. market historically is a strong market for our brand. We have a great existing licensing roster that includes partnerships with leading firms such as ACCO Brands (Calendars, Alcove Brands (Health & Vitamins); ASO (First Aid), Bendon (publishing), Bentex Group ( Toddler Apparel )Centric Brands (sleepwear), DanDee International (Seasonal & Non-Seasonal Toys, Collectibles, Home Décor, Pet and Baby Products), David’s Textiles (fabric), Decopac (cake decorating), Fabpops (Mobile Accessories), Gotta Love It (apparel), Handcraft Manufacturing Corp. ( Children´s Underwear ), Isaac Morris, LTD (Apparel); Jay Franco (domestics), Paramount Brands (fragrance), RedBubble (Fan Art/ECommerce); Running Press (publishing), Strikeforce Bowling (bowling), Success Promotions (promotional products and emoji “Attitude” bobble.), ( Townley (HBA), Trends International, LLC- Posters and Stickers, Unique (partyware), Unitrex SpaRoom (Automotive Air Fresheners), World Tech Toys (toys), and ZAK! Design (Dinnerware, Drinkware and Food Storage). For 2020 there are some exciting new partnerships coming from the US with a global impact which we will be able to announce in the next months.

The evolution of the emoji brand has been very steady, most of your foundation partners continue to grow with you so what’s the secret? It Is true that both the development and the growth of the brand has been very steady since its launch. From a management and company perspective we like to maintain partnerships and to foster them, we are a highly service driven company that listens to the demands of its licensees and rapidly adapts to the requirements of a fast-changing consumer goods markets. Beyond that the emoji® brand is the perfect brand to communicate with and it allows our partners to convey crystal clear consumer messages in the most fun and expressive way. Finally the brand has a true family potential and is beloved by a universal target audience of any gender and any age demographic which makes the brand suitable for everyone. Can you give us one or two trends for the emoji® brand for 2020? Throughout 2020 will see some great campaigns and partnerships with existing and new clients. There will be multiple loyalty campaigns around the globe as well as significant DTR programs with leading retailers in multiple territories. There will be global fashion collaborations and a variety of new products such as emoji® shaped vitamins. It will be another exciting year for the brand and the emoji company. Can you tell us a little about the progress of your retail shopfronts? In 2019 we opened our first 3 emoji® monobrand apparel stores in China as well as the official emoji® brand store on TMall. Throughout 2020 we are going to open

another 10 stores in China and will launch additional online stores on other platforms. The aim is to open at least 100 emoji® mono brand stores in China within the next 4 years. Together with our Chinese partner we develop and offer our own emoji® apparel collections inspired by urban, sports and streetwear fashion. In 2020, the product portfolio will be extended to fashion accessories and bags as well. In addition to that we are going to open the first emoji® brand tea stores in the region, a perfect concept to engage the consumer with the emoji® brand. What is your outlook for the year ahead? Next to managing the day to day licensing business we are working on some bigger projects at the moment, in particular analyzing our options in building a permanent experience park. As you can imagine this is a large project, we will keep The Bugg Report updated as soon as we can tell you more. We read recently that your most recent intuitive is to move into the toy market. Can you elaborate on this please? Given the success of our collectible toy loyalty campaigns that we already ran in various places around the world we started to analyze the potential for a general toy collectible line and other possible items. First talks have been held with potential partners but it takes some time to define the right product and launch strategy for this market segment.





announced completion of the merger of CBS and Viacom end of last year creating a leading, global premium content powerhouse with global scale including leadership positions in markets across Australia, New Zealand, the U.S., Europe, Latin America and Asia. ViacomCBS will be home to more than 140,000 premium TV episodes and 3,600 film titles, with global production capabilities and more than $13 billion in annual content investment. The company now accounts for 22% of TV viewership in the U.S. and in Australia includes Network 10. Driven by iconic consumer brands, ViacomCBS’s portfolio includes:

Nickelodeon Networks continues to be the #1 kids’ subscription television network amongst 0 - 12-year-olds, averaging a 15.5% share and a 2.4% share of all individuals. Nick network reached over 3.3 million viewers in 2019 with reaching 1.9 million viewers and an average share of 7.1% of kids 5 - 12 years old and reaching 2.5 million viewers including over 440,000 kids 0 – 4 years old and an average 18.1% share. On the digital front, Nick.com.au had over 2.8 million page views and 503,000 unique visitors in 2019 and NickJr.com.au attracted 5.1 million page views and 397,000 unique visitors. The Nick Play app delivered 15.5 million page views and 139,000 unique visitors and the Nick Jr. Play app delivered 27 million page views and 99,000 unique visitors in 2019. With the completion of the merger and significant investment in content across all screens, 2020 is lining up to be a truly big year for

ViacomCBS Consumer Products helps drive content development and acquisition by identifying those properties with the greatest product potential. Linear television continues to be the largest single distribution platform, and in the U.S. ViacomCBS has the largest share of TV viewing across all key demographics1. But we follow the fans. And as audiences adopt other platforms, so do we. For kids in particular, we know is a major player. So we are creating content specifically for and traveling the audience back and forth between that platform and ours. Increased content drives increased consumption, with Nickelodeon’s reach up 55% in the past year. Streaming services round out the top three media destinations for kids and locally and all stream content as well as our other youth and adult brands. Innovation and marketing play an important part in keeping our audiences engaged and locally has run a number of highly successful pop up channels for both PAW Patrol and SpongeBob SquarePants.

1 Source: Nielsen. Note: Represents live+7, P2+ Primetime viewership for 2018-2019 Season (9/24/2018 –5/22/2019).




AISLE. ® & © 2020 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.

THE BIGGEST PRE-SCHOOL FRANCHISE ON SCREENS AND SHELVES IN THE WORLD Since its debut in 2013, PAW Patrol has embedded itself as a mainstay of kid’s television and continues to create puppy adventures in the pre-school space as a consumer products global powerhouse franchise. DELIVERING OVER $7BILLION IN LIFETIME GLOBAL RETAIL SALES, PAW PATROL IS UNSTOPPABLE! Rolling into its seventh year, PAW Patrol continues to expand its ‘paw print’ across multi-platforms, delivering NEW content across the ViacomCBS eco-system. PAW Patrol remains: TV all year round on

With more than 27 licensees signed in Australia and New Zealand, PAW Patrol continues to deliver at retail, achieving stand out results across multiple categories including: #1 Pre-school Toy license #1 Pre-school license in Hardlines and Party Goods #1 Pre-school license in Boys outerwear and sleepwear 2020 shows no signs of slowing down with NEW formats and NEW product in previously untapped categories across CPG. Season 7 debuts on 7th anniversary - August 2020

#1 show on

2020 Theatrical Release – Jet to the Rescue

#1 Pre-school show on

PAW Patrol Live! Race to the Rescue

#1 Family Home Entertainment brand 83M ANZ Views on 1M+ PAW Patrol fans reached through on ground events

BUTTERBEAN’S CAFÉ IS A SURE-FIRE RECIPE FOR SUCCESS! Pre-schoolers are being whisked away on magical culinary adventures in super cute series, Butterbean’s Café. A spoonful of leadership, a dash of entrepreneurial spirit and just a sprinkle of fairy magic is the perfect mix of ingredients Butterbean’s Café was Nickelodeon’s highest-rated preschool launch in the US since PAW Patrol. The series as also had great local success delivering a 20.6% share amongst kids 0 – 4 years old since launching in Australia over a year ago. Season 2 debuts October 2020 60 episodes committed CP audience girls 2-5 Butterbean’s Café is already cooking up a storm with Mattel as master toy partner. Toys & DVD launch in Australia from June 2020, with additional category roll-out planned from 2021.

2021 - Dino Rescue


LET’S BLAZE! Blaze and the Monster Machines revolves around a monster truck, Blaze, and his human driver, AJ, as they embark on adventures in Axle City, exploring the physics of how things move, tackling problems and discovering the component parts needed to make everyday technologies work. The play pattern for Blaze was jointly developed with master toy partner and woven into each episode. Blaze has been a ratings success around the world and Nickelodeon is keeping the wheels turning with NEW content through 2021, NEW digital touchpoints and a NEW toy line from Mattel – driven by strong demand from Blaze fans. Blaze airs eighteen times a week on , reached 1.8 million viewers in 2019 and was consistently one of the top five shows on the channel. Seasons one to three are currently available on and , with both affiliates planning to launch season five in October 2020.



Pinkfong launched Baby Shark in 2016 and the Internet went into melt down. With more than 4.5 billion video views, this is the epitome of a viral sensation! The Pinkfong channel is now the number one education channel on , boasting over 29 million subscribers and 12 billion views, with Australia attributing to 11 million monthly and 300 thousand daily views on the channel. Continuing to captivate fans far and wide with a song no-one can escape…

As of this month will air a series of short clips and stunts to build excitement for the debut of Baby Shark’s first full-length series which is scheduled to premiere in quarter one of 2021. Australian retail giant first took the plunge on Baby Shark in June 2019 and the toys sold out in two weeks. dived in as the master licensing agent and quickly secured ten licenses and fast tracked product to market with astounding results. A family offering for Christmas almost sold out before it even appeared in catalogue! There is a sea of opportunity out there for Baby Shark!

doo-doo, doo-doo, doo-doo… Pinkfong is partnering with to expand the Baby Shark universe through NEW content and consumer products.


IT’S TIME TO GET CLUED IN! Nickelodeon’s first billion-dollar franchise - Blue’s Clues is back as Blue’s Clues & You! Revived from the iconic ‘90s series this brand new, modernised series follows Blue (with a refreshed CG look) as she invites viewers to join her and host Josh Dela Cruz on a clue-led adventure. With each signature paw print, Blue identifies clues in her animated world that propel the story and inspire the audience to work together with Josh to solve puzzles. Following the successful launch in the US in November 2019, the series is set to premiere in New Zealand in March 2020 and Australia in May 2020 and has already been greenlit for Season 2 with an additional 20 episodes. As a network priority, Blue’s Clues &You! will be leveraged across all platforms with the full might of the ecosystem.

Blue’s Clues & You! is quickly building buzz and excitement at retail, with the announcement of Nickelodeon’s global toy partners. is signed on for plush, figures, playsets and roleplay and for early learning toys. NEW products will arrive on retail shelves from 2021. New Host, Joshua Dela Cruz New Animation “Mail time” with letters and Emails Handy Dandy smartphone and notebook New show open and theme song Interactive play-along episodes on Nick Jr. Play app


A GLOBAL EVERGREEN ICON AND POP CULTURE MAINSTAY FOR 20 YEARS AND COUNTING! Are ya ready, Kids? Aye Aye Captain! The adventures of the world’s most lovable sponge and his starfish sidekick continue to be a hit on and off screen. For over 20 years, the boundless imagination, childlike happiness and optimism of SpongeBob SquarePants has united young and old. It’s no stretch in saying SpongeBob is one of the most iconic brands of all time!

65M Total global viewers Reaches 1 out of 2 kids in the US 2019’s #1 Animated series in the US Top 5 Animated show for 19 consecutive years in the US

Looking ahead, now in its 12th season, SpongeBob continues to use its iconic appeal to build new content and engage fans, with so much more on the way:-

Season 13 Greenlit The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run Greenlit Krusty Cook-off Mobile App – Launching Mid 2020 As SpongeBob fans around the globe celebrate the TV icon’s 20th anniversary, the series continues to thrive in the retail space as a sought after fashion partner, licensed in over 200+ territories including global partnerships. The most recent collaboration featuring Kyrie Irving’s Nike capsule collection sold out in just nine minutes. SpongeBob continues to ramp up its consumer products presence with a ton of exciting NEW retail partnerships underway!



“America’s most famous children’s entertainer – a singular star with more spunk than Shirley Temple and the merchandising power of both Olsen Twins” –

Playmates, who continue to be the master toy partner for Turtles, are capitalizing on the Turtles’ legacy with a new heritage style guide that taps into the Turtles’ multi-generational appeal, with designs inspired by the comic books and original series.

The singer, dancer, actress and vlogger has amassed a following of more than 10 million subscribers views to date, but it and received over 2.4 billion doesn’t stop there. is expanding the JoJo brand into new aisles and markets with new content, products and experiences to drive continued growth.

$1 billion in global retail sales +166% Growth in total US product sales YOY Girls license of the year 2019 – LIMA Australia award

broadcasts Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles over weekends, while continues to produce new original short form content for the dedicated Turtles global channel. Coming up: Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie on Netflix 2021 and Paramount is in development for a brand new Turtles feature film. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a GLOBAL POWERHOUSE with strong multi-generational appeal enjoying a retro renaissance.

THE WORLD’S MOST SYNDICATED COMIC STRIP Everyone’s favourite lazy, lasagna loving, socially awkward fictional fat cat made his first appearance in 1978 and soon became the most syndicated comic strip in the world. Over 40 years on and Garfield has cemented himself as a true pop-culture icon.

Adults love Garfield for his unfiltered honesty. Kids love Garfield because he’s funny, mischievous and unapologetically 100% cat.

200M books sold globally 18M+ social followers 100M App downloads $100M at the box office – theatrical release in development

Now, Nickelodeon is introducing this cool cat to a whole new audience, re-imagining his legendary imagery and phrases with enhanced new artwork, fashion lookbooks and focus.


Garfield’s irreverence, broad humour and universality is the ‘pawfect’ formula to become a consumer products juggernaut.



MTV redefined award shows and continues to shape popular culture as the #1 youth entertainment brand in the world. Over the past 12 months, MTV has produced more original Australian content than ever before. MTV Unplugged Melbourne Teen Mom Australia The Veronicas: Blood is for Life MTV CRIBS 2019 was also the year fans got reacquainted with some of the most iconic reality TV stars in history with the launch of The Hills: New Beginnings and Jersey Shore Family Vacation leading MTV to achieve its highest-ever monthly audience share of 16-54 year olds in December 2019. With over 320 million global social fans, MTV connects both the young and the young at heart like no other brand.

This multiple award-winning animated series has dominated the media landscape for nearly three decades and still remains a relevant and funny show about kids (that is totally unsuitable for kids). It is undeniably part of the zeitgeist – fresh with pop culture and political parody. Broadcast on SBS, 10Bold, Comedy Central and TVNZ Duke, this series is a ratings hit and can be seen all year round on SVOD platforms , apps, mobile, console games, live events, fan conventions, retail and more. The show has garnered 47 Million fans globally. There are 297 episodes and more in the pipeline. ViacomCBS are re-invigorating existing categories – toys, collectibles, apparel and accessories and looking to expand into new categories with a hit list of products designed with the superfan in mind. Developing partnerships in 2020 will deliver a monumental 25th Season celebration across all consumer products touchpoints.

© 2020 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All rights reserved. © 2020 King Features Syndicate, Inc./Fleischer Studios, Inc. TM Hearst Holdings, Inc./Fleischer Studios, Inc. TM & © 2020 Mojang Synergies AB ©2020 Apple Corps Ltd. A BeatlesTM Product. TM & © 2020 TTL & MMPL

Licensing the best in entertainment, downunder.

Taking BRANDS further

Consumers are moving beyond traditional merchandise and seeking engaging brand experiences. Merchantwise takes brands further by developing unique brand partnerships across all consumer touchpoints, from traditional merchandise and packaged goods through to digital and live entertainment.

Contact us to discuss your licensing opportunities in Australia and New Zealand. e. info@merchantwise.com

t. +61 (0)3 9520 1000

w. merchantwise.com

Block Founda:on, a non-profit organiza:on empowering communi:es to transform neglected urban spaces into vibrant places that improve the quality of life for all. Minecra7: Educa3on Edi3on Merchantwise Licensing is a leading entertainment brand licensing and merchandising agency in Australia and New Zealand, represen:ng some of the world’s best loved brands in digital & gaming, kids’ entertainment, film and television, icons & legends and music. Merchantwise Licensing is part of the Merchantwise Group, a full-service brand agency headquartered in Melbourne, Australia, with offices in Sydney and Paris. Merchantwise Licensing shares a sneak peek at the latest news and upcoming entertainment proper:es for this year.

The best-selling video game of all 3me Released in 2009 by Swedish developer Mojang, MinecraN is a game centred on breaking and placing blocks. Players can work together to create wonderful, imagina:ve things. MinecraN is a cultural phenomenon and the bestselling video game of all :me, selling over 176 million copies across all plaRorms. It is played by over 112 million monthly ac:ve players and is also the most watched game on Youtube. BrandTrends research reveals that MinecraN is the most popular game brand in Australia for children up to 14 years. 39% of the player base are female and 44% are aged 8-17 years.

What started as a game has evolved into a true evergreen entertainment franchise, comprising of educa:on, live events, products as well as a movie in the pipeline. Mojang’s purpose is to build a be\er world through the power of play and inspire genera:ons of game changers. To that end, it established The Block by

A unique aspect of MinecraN is its strong educa:on plaRorm, embraced by teachers and parents alike. MinecraN: Educa:on Edi:on is specially designed for schools, offering game-based learning for students from primary school through to higher educa:on. Over 35 million teachers and students are licensed, across 115 countries. For example, Australian students can now visit Mini Melbourne, a collabora:ve project between the Victorian Dept of Educa:on and Training and the Metro Tunnel Project to build a virtual city of Melbourne in MinecraN: Educa:on Edi:on. Brand new games in 2020 2020 represents a watershed year for MinecraN. In addi:on to ongoing updates to the core game, there are two major new game releases hotly an:cipated in the next few months. Launching in April is MinecraDungeons – an ac:on adventure game in the classic dungeon crawler style, offering new characters, environments and style of play within the MinecraN Universe. Also a\rac:ng strong interest is Minecra- Earth - the new freeto-play mobile augmented reality game bringing MinecraN to the real world and taking gamers outside. Live events & live streaming Scheduled for September is MinecraN Fes:val, the game’s most ambi:ous live experience yet: a three-day celebra:on of all things MinecraN in Florida, USA. EDITION 32 · TOY HOBBY & LICENSING FAIR



Sonic the Hedgehog movie from Paramount Pictures in cinemas now, starring Jim Carrey and James Marsden Top 10 gaming franchise worldwide with over $1 billion in sales One of the world’s favourite video game characters and a social media superstar – 14+ million in the community across Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Facebook! Celebrating 30th anniversary in 2021

For licensing opportunities, please contact: Kerryn McCormack, Licensing Director P: +61 3 9520 1000 E: kerryn@merchantwise.com W: merchantwise.com

Enthusiasts can expect interac:ve exhibits, inclusive gameplay, fierce tournaments, intense live entertainment, exclusive merchandise, panels, and meet & greets with content creators and developers. Minecon Live also returns in September. Filmed live and streamed to players throughout the world, Minecon is packed with juicy MinecraN news, content creators, and will include pre and post show bits, as well as on-demand community panels.

Sonic Speeds into Cinemas, DelighIng Fans First released in 1991, Sonic is a $1 billion franchise and one of the most popular video game characters of all :me. Paramount Pictures released the first ever Sonic movie in cinemas in February 2020, achieving a stunning US$101M opening weekend at the global box office. Starring James Marsden and Jim Carrey, this fast and ac:on-packed comedy is a hit for of all ages. In Australia, the Sonic toy range is being distributed by Headstart into mass retailers and VR Distribu:on into independent toy retailers.

Global merchandising Globally, enthusiasts spend over $A1 billion per year on MinecraN consumer products in categories including books and comics, toys, games, apparel, accessories, electronics, sta:onery, collec:bles and home décor. Minecra7 down under Now represented in Australia and New Zealand by Merchantwise Licensing, the MinecraN universe is set to significantly expand down under at retailers including EB Games, Big W, Target and The Warehouse. The local program includes LEGO (construc:on toys); Ma7el (ac:on figures, playsets and roleplay); J!NX (plush and collec:ble toys distributed by Banter Toys); Funko (Pop Vinyl distributed by Ikon Collec:bles); Zak! Australia (lunching, drinkware and home décor); Hardie Grant Egmont (publishing); Caprice (apparel, bags, footwear, accessories, bedding and towels). Global fashion collabora:ons featuring in Australia and NZ include Havaianas and Happy Socks. Other new local partners to be announced shortly.

From July, new partner Kawada Japan, will launch a range of collec:ble Sonic pixel figurines globally. A variety of other new Sonic licensees will be launching a range of new products in 2020, including showbags, giNs and novel:es as well as broad range of apparel and accessories across mul:ple retailers. Global footwear partner PUMA has given its RSX³ sneaker two retro reinterpreta:ons with help from Sonic The Hedgehog and the Rubik’s Cube brand. The silhoue\e was introduced in October last year and has already seen a number of itera:ons, such as the bold “Hot Coral” and “Lime Punch” offerings. The new Sonic pair comes in black, mixing leather, suede and mesh together alongside the character’s archetype colour scheme of red and blue. Looking ahead to 2021, the brand will celebrate its 30th anniversary with new video games, new game content, a music concert with special guests and a wide array of new licensing and merchandising partnerships. PAC-MAN – Arcade legend celebrates 40 years Created by BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc video game designer Toru lwatani in 1980, PAC-MAN is regarded as one of the most popular and influen:al video games of all :me. Its :tle character was the first original mascot, making gaming accessible to female audiences and becoming a huge licensing and merchandising success. With global brand awareness of 98%, PAC-MAN is one of the most recognized brands on the planet. What started as an arcade game is now available on all EDITION 32 · TOY HOBBY & LICENSING FAIR


PAC-MAN™ & ©BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc.

For licensing opportunities, please contact: Kerryn McCormack, Licensing Director P: +61 3 9520 1000 E: kerryn@merchantwise.com W: merchantwise.com

plaRorms, including Xbox, PlaySta:on, Switch, iOS and Android, with over 110 million downloads.

emoIonal. mulIcultural. official. joyful. iconic.

PAC-MAN is a full brand franchise, extending beyond gaming into film, live events and ac:va:ons, fashion and consumer products, adver:sing and promo:ons. 2020 marks the 40th anniversary of this pop culture phenomenon. Global celebra:ons include a new website, song, live events and merchandise. In Australia, Bensons Trading will release a range of new products this year including the Pac-Man showbag, sound plush, giNs and novel:es. Caprice Australia will launch men’s outerwear in Big W in April. In April, retailer Best & Less will celebrate the 40th anniversary with an exclusive retro gaming retail ac:va:on. An extensive apparel range from Hotsprings will comprise of outerwear and sleepwear for the whole family – from toddlers to adults. SPACE INVADERS – old school gaming at its finest Space Invaders - the classic arcade video game developed by Tomohiro Nishikado - was first released in 1978 and instantly transformed video games into a global industry. Now a pop culture icon and symbol of gaming, it is referenced in film and TV and features as part of video game and cultural exhibi:ons. Space Invaders con:nues to be highly popular in the world of fashion collabora:ons and partnerships. In April, retailer Best & Less will showcase an exclusive retro gaming themed collec:on with Space Invaders starring alongside PAC-MAN. The apparel range from Caprice comprises of tshirts and sleepwear for kids and teens.

Emojis are the ul:mate universal expressive language - over 6 billion are sent daily through messaging and social media plaRorms. Inspired by this phenomenon, the emoji® company was founded in 2013, crea:ng an iconic lifestyle brand with an unprecedented global popularity. Today, the emoji trademark is registered in over 100 territories across up to 30 classes of goods and services. There are now more than 20,000 high vectorized icons available for licensing. emoji® has a\racted more than 800 partners from all over the world, winning mul:ple awards. In Australia and New Zealand, the brand con:nues to be popular with 15 licensing partners across a wide range categories, from fashion, publishing, automo:ve and homewares to food, beverage and promo:ons. 2020 will see the launch of new apparel ranges at Big W and The Warehouse. Scholas:c has a popular publishing range in market, with an emojipedia to launch later in the year. In 2019, the world’s first emoji® personalised license plates launched in Queensland and became an instant success, promp:ng an expansion of the range in 2020.

Also successful was the emoji® themed television adver:sing campaign for Wrigley’s Eclipse Mints, created by adver:sing agency Clemenger. The campaign will con:nue in Australia and parts of Asia in 2020. Other new products to launch in 2020 include cake decora:ons from Dr Oetker and limited edi:on emoji® coins from the Perth Mint.




NEW GEAR • Xbox Series X, the fastest and most powerful gaming console ever – releasing Q4 2020 • Extensive product range now available at EB Games and other leading retailers

For licensing opportunities, please contact: Emma Aldenhoven, Senior Business Manager P: +61 3 9520 1000 E: emmaa@merchantwise.com W: merchantwise.com © 2020 Microsoft.

XBOX XBOX SERIES SERIES X –X – thethe most most powerful powerful console console everever FirstFirst released released in 2001, in 2001, Microso3’s Microso3’s XboxXbox is one is one of the of the world’s world’s leading leading game game consoles. consoles. Top Top firstfirst party party franchises franchises on Xbox on Xbox include include Halo, Halo, Forza, Forza, Gears Gears of War of War andand Sea Sea of of Thieves. Thieves. AddiJonally, AddiJonally, the the popular popular XboxXbox Game Game PassPass lets lets users users access access more more thanthan 100100 high-quality high-quality console console andand PC PC games, games, for afor single a single low low monthly monthly subscripJon subscripJon price. price. New New console console Launching Launching this this holiday, holiday, the the XboxXbox Series Series X will X will be the be the fastest fastest andand mostmost powerful powerful console console ever,ever, sePng sePng a new a new bar bar for gaming for gaming performance. performance. Its unique Its unique industrial industrial design design delivers delivers fourfour Jmes Jmes the the processing processing power power of of the the previous previous console. console. WithWith unmatched unmatched speed speed andand compaJbility, compaJbility, XboxXbox Series Series X X will will allow allow gamers gamers to bring to bring theirtheir XboxXbox gaming gaming legacy legacy – – thousands thousands of games of games fromfrom three three generaJons generaJons andand more more – – forward forward withwith them. them. New New gear gear Inspired Inspired by the by the latest latest streetwear streetwear trends, trends, the the firstfirst everever range range of of XboxXbox licensed licensed merchandise merchandise withwith XboxXbox Official Official Gear, Gear, launched launched globally globally online online andand via key via key specialty specialty retailers retailers in 2019. in 2019. In In Australia Australia andand NewNew Zealand, Zealand, the the program program launched launched exclusively exclusively at EB atGames EB Games stores stores in in November November withwith a range a range of t-shirts, of t-shirts, headwear, headwear, socks, socks, drinkware, drinkware, gi3sgi3s andand novelJes. novelJes. A major A major expansion expansion of the of the program program is is planned planned in 2020, in 2020, withwith significant significant market market acJvity acJvity planned planned around around the the launch launch of the of the newnew console console this this fall. fall. In addiJon In addiJon to further to further expansion expansion of the of the program program at EB atGames, EB Games, the the XboxXbox geargear has has nownow launched launched at mass at mass market market withwith a range a range of older of older boysboys andand men’s men’s outerwear outerwear andand sleepwear sleepwear available available at Big at W Bigand W and other other leading leading retailers retailers via licensee via licensee Caprice. Caprice. Other Other newnew products products will will include include bagsbags andand backpacks, backpacks, headwear headwear andand socks. socks.

HALO HALO INFINITE INFINITE – The – The Master Master Chief Chief returns returns HaloHalo has has been been synonymous synonymous withwith XboxXbox since since day day one,one, launching launching withwith the the original original XboxXbox in 2001, in 2001, andand since since thenthen becoming becoming Xbox’s Xbox’s #1 exclusive #1 exclusive franchise. franchise. It is Itthe is the mostmost

recognized recognized sci-fisci-fi video video game game franchise franchise of allofJme, all Jme, withwith the the Master Master Chief Chief transcending transcending gaming gaming andand becoming becoming a a poppop culture culture iconicon HaloHalo is also is also a giant a giant in the in the merchandising merchandising world, world, achieving achieving overover $US$US 1.7 billion 1.7 billion in licensed in licensed product product sales. sales. WithWith a major a major newnew game game release, release, TV show TV show in in development, development, andand a robust a robust merchandise merchandise program, program, the the nextnext few few years years are are shaping shaping up to upbe to be the the biggest biggest everever in in the the history history of this of this 19 year 19 year global global franchise. franchise. In holiday In holiday 2020, 2020, The The Master Master Chief Chief returns returns in the in the highly highly anJcipated anJcipated nextnext chapter chapter of the of the HaloHalo franchise, franchise, Halo Halo

Infinite, Infinite, alongside alongside the next-generation the next-generation console, console, the Xbox the Xbox Series Series X. The X. The newnew release release will will redefine redefine HaloHalo withwith an epic an epic Master Master ChiefChief sagasaga and and dynamic, dynamic, evolving evolving multiplayer. multiplayer. The The graphically graphically stunning stunning HaloHalo Universe Universe will will showcase showcase the the unique unique capabilities capabilities of the of new the new XboxXbox Series Series X. X. Halo Halo Infinite Infinite will will alsoalso support support more more plaaorms plaaorms thanthan everever before, before, including including the the newnew XboxXbox Series Series X console, X console, the the enJre enJre XboxXbox OneOne family family of devices, of devices, andand a wide a wide range range of of PCs PCs (and(and will will be included be included withwith XboxXbox Game Game PassPass for PC for PC andand console). console). As Chris As Chris Lee,Lee, Studio Studio Head Head of Halo of Halo Infinite, Infinite, putsputs it, “By it, “By harnessing harnessing the the power power of our of our newnew Slipspace Slipspace Engine Engine andand combining combining it with it with the the power power andand promise promise of Xbox of Xbox Series Series X, we X, plan we plan to build to build the the HaloHalo game game we’ve we’ve always always dreamed dreamed of –of and – and share share it with it with eveneven more more players, players, compeJtors, compeJtors, adventurers, adventurers, andand creators creators thanthan everever before.” before.” Also,Also, in development, in development, is the is highly the highly anticipated anticipated newnew TV series TV series for Showtime, for Showtime, starring starring Pablo Pablo Schreiber Schreiber as Master as Master Chief. Chief. HaloHalo consumer consumer products products will will ramp ramp up with up with the the launch launch of of Halo Halo Infinite Infinite andand XboxXbox Series Series X. InX.Australia, In Australia, a great a great newnew range range of acJon of acJon figures figures fromfrom Wicked Wicked CoolCool ToysToys will will be distributed be distributed by Banter by Banter Toys,Toys, alongside alongside newnew NERF NERF blasters blasters fromfrom Hasbro, Hasbro, Mega Mega Construx Construx setssets fromfrom Magel Magel andand Funko Funko poppop vinylvinyl distributed distributed by Ikon by Ikon CollecJbles. CollecJbles. A local A local range range of of outerwear, outerwear, sleepwear, sleepwear, socks, socks, underwear underwear andand headwear headwear are also are also in development in development for for specialty specialty andand mass mass market market channels. channels.




Halo Infinite launches Q4 2020 with the new Xbox console, Series X Most recognized sci-fi video game franchise of all time US$5.8 billion global business including an extensive CP program New toy ranges from Nerf, Mega Construx and Wicked Cool Toys Halo TV series coming soon to Showtime

Š 2020 Microsoft.

For licensing opportunities, please contact: Emma Aldenhoven, Senior Business Manager P: +61 3 9520 1000 E: emmaa@merchantwise.com W: merchantwise.com

Licensing Essen:als will be launching a Top Gun showbag at the Royal Melbourne Show in :me for the home entertainment release. Get ready to RUMBLE! From Paramount Anima:on comes an original story where monster wrestling is a global sport and humans are their biggest fans. In a world where monsters and humans co-exist, every town and city has one monster that represents them in the worldwide monster wrestling federa:on – more a religion than a sport. When a small-town monster leaves to fight for the big city, one girl has to recruit the son of a wres:ng legend and train him to be the wrestler he could never be.

PARAMOUNT is a Hollywood icon and America’s second oldest studio known for its much-loved film classics and high-octane box office blockbusters. Paramount is a subsidiary of media giant Viacom. Top Gun Maverick set to soar again Top Gun Maverick sees Tom Cruise reprise one of his most iconic roles. ANer more than thirty years of service as one of the Navy's top aviators, Pete “Maverick” Mitchell (Tom Cruise) is where he belongs, Paramount Pictures has partnered with WWE and key wrestlers will be par:cipa:ng in marke:ng and providing voice talent. Rumble releases in cinemas in April 2021. Master toy partner is Playmates, to be distributed in Australia by HeadStart. Local licensing opportuni:es now available for discussion. Paramount Classics

pushing the envelope as a courageous test pilot and dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him. The film is set for take-off in June 2020 and fans in Australia and New Zealand can expect a strong range of product at retail. Placement has been secured across all major retailers ahead of the movie release. Master toy partner Ma\el has developed a diecast range of vehicles and playsets to hit shelves for Toy Cat. Dads can be especially excited this Father’s Day as both Big W and Best & Less have got him covered with a range of apparel, accessories, home and giNware.

With a library of some 3,300 films including Top Gun, The Godfather, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Grease, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Anchorman, Clueless and Mean Girls, Paramount is home to many of the world’s best loved classics. In 2019, Australian lifestyle brand Peter Alexander launched its sixth Breakfast at Tiffany’s collec:on, with a stylish classic sleepwear range featuring iconic Holly Golightly imagery. Co\on On con:nues to release a diverse range of kids, men’s and women’s apparel and accessories from mul:ple :tles in the Paramount Classics library including Mean Girls, Clueless, Top Gun, Grease and the iconic Paramount Pictures logo.



MIRAMAX – Film favourites from TaranIno Miramax is a leading film and television studio with a library of more than 700 mo:on pictures. The Miramax library holds some of the world’s most original and acclaimed independent films including films by Quen:n Taran:no – Pulp Fic:on, Kill Bill Vol I & II, Jackie Brown and Dusk Till Dawn – as well as scores of commercially successful films such as Bad Santa, Sin City and the Scream, Scary Movie and Hellraiser franchises. Local licensing opportuni:es available now. Disenchantment – Her Throne is Calling DISENCHANTMENT is the new adult animated comedy series from the mind of Ma\ Groening, creator of The Simpsons. The series takes place in the crumbling medieval kingdom of Dreamland and follows the adventures of a hard-drinking princess named Bean, her diminu:ve companion Elfo and her personal demon Luci. Along the way, the oddball trio encounter ogres, sprites, harpies, imps, trolls, walruses, and lots of human fools. The series currently streams worldwide on NETFLIX in 190 countries and 30 languages. The first 10 episodes launched in 2018, the next 10 launched in 2019 and NeRlix will stream the next 10 episodes from September 2020. Licensing partners include, Funko, Bioworld, Kidrobot, Just Funky, Philcos, Bravado, Lowes, Level 52 Studios, Rizzoli and Caprice Australia. Jay Jays will launch Disenchantment apparel to coincide with the new season in September.

The Elf on the Shelf®: A Christmas Tradi:on is a funfilled Christmas tradi:on that has captured the hearts of children everywhere who welcome home one of Santa’s Scout Elves each holiday season. When a family adopts a Scout Elf™ (from a Santaapproved adop:on centre), they receive the Scout Elf™, an arRully illustrated hardbound storybook and a keepsake box.



The magical Scout Elves help Santa manage his nice list by taking note of a family’s Christmas adventures and repor:ng back to Santa at the North Pole nightly. Each morning, the Scout Elf returns to its family and perches in a new spot, wai:ng for someone to spot them. Children love to wake up and race around the house to find their Scout Elf. What started as a humble family tradi:on in 2011 has grown into a global phenomenon embraced by millions of families. With more than 17 million Scout Elves and Elf Pets adopted worldwide, the company currently has a footprint in 11 countries across 5 con:nents and has quickly expanded to offer books, games, ac:vi:es, accessories, toys, and animated specials under The Elf on the Shelf® and Elf Pets® brand names. In addi:on, the company has acquired over 50 licensing partners and has established several prominent co-brand partnerships globally. In Australia, The Elf on the Shelf® core range has been extremely popular at Myer GiNorium, Kmart and leading speciality and independent retailers, distributed by PMG Australia. WesRield has also embraced The Elf on the Shelf® with major live ac:va:ons across 35 malls over the holiday period. A local licensing program managed by Merchantwise Licensing is now in development to augment the core product range, to include apparel and accessories, costumes, tableware, novelty confec:onery, publishing and more. The Gruffalo comes to life in augmented reality The Gruffalo is one of the world's best-loved children’s literary crea:ons. Since It was first published in 1999, the award-winning story about a li\le brown mouse in the deep dark wood has con:nued to delight children and adults the world over.

Created by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, The Gruffalo has become a modern classic spanning publishing, film, stage, theme parks, digital and merchandise. Launched in Australia in 2019, the Gruffalo Spo\ers AR App and adventure trail has been featured at a variety of popular a\rac:ons including Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary (Qld), Rippon Lea Garden Estate (Vic), Illawarra Fly and Wildlife Sydney Zoo (NSW), a\rac:ng over 30,000 families to date. Addi:onal loca:ons for 2020 will be announced soon.

launch in 2020. A range of toys from Hunter Products is planned for release in September 2020 with other categories now available for licensing. Introducing Kiri and Lou – Handmade in New Zealand Merchantwise Licensing has been appointed to represent licensing and merchandising for Kiri and Lou, a gorgeous new stop-mo:on anima:on series for children 3–7 years, handmade in Christchurch New Zealand.

Retailer Peter Alexander launched a fun and furry Gruffalo family sleepwear collec:on for book week in August 2019. Throughout 2020, The Gruffalo’s Child Live stage show from CDP, will return to Australia from March with shows across the country. Moon & Me – Sparkling new preschool Moon and Me is a beau:ful new preschool TV series created by Andy Davenport, the acclaimed creator of The Teletubbies and In The Night Garden which collec:vely generated over $5 billion in global merchandise sales. Moon and Me is a landmark commission by the BBC, co-produced by Foundling Bird and Su:kki and distributed by 9 Story Distribu:on Interna:onal.

Airing daily on ABC KIDS, the show is inspired by wellloved tales of toys that come to life when nobody is looking - made with stunning 3D anima:on and puppetry. Moon and Me is the highest rated series on Cbeebies and was recognised as a “hot property” by The NPD Group, Inc for 2019. There are more than 35 licensees in the UK across a broad variety of categories including toys and games, publishing, apparel, homewares, sta:onery and FMCG. Merchantwise Licensing is managing the marke:ng and licensing of Moon and Me in Australia and New Zealand. First publishing :tles from Scholas:c Australia are now available, with a further five :tles to

Kiri and Lou centres on the friendship between Kiri, a feisty li\le dinosaur, and Lou, a gentle and thoughRul creature, as they explore the world of feelings through laughter, song and outdoor adventure. Original and imagina:ve, Kiri and Lou invites children to learn about empathy and how to get along, through warm-hearted and gently humorous storylines which are resona:ng with audiences of all ages. The show is hand-craNed in paper and clay and created using tradi:onal stop-mo:on anima:on from Antony Elworthy (Coraline, Corpse Bride, Isle of Dogs), the series is voiced by Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords, Moana, Rio) and Olivia Tennet (Lord of the Rings) and is wri\en and directed by feature film director Harry Sinclair. It is produced by Fiona Copland for Stretchy and Heather Walker of Yowza Anima:on (Curious George, Welcome to the Wayne) with interna:onal sales handled by CAKE. 20 x 5-minute episodes have been released with a further 32 episodes coming throughout 2020. Kiri and Lou has broadcast on TVNZ since March 2019 and ABC Kids since June 2019. On ABC Kids, it airs daily at 8.05 am and is available for streaming on ABC iView. In 2019, Kiri and Lou was selected for screening at Annecy in the TV Films in Compe::on category and recently won the Cynopsis Best of the Best Awards in New York. It is a finalist for the pres:gious Prix Jeunesse Interna:onal 2020. The show is rolling out globally on the best preschool networks including Cbeebies (UK), CBC Canada, YLE in Finland, SVT in Sweden, Czech Television, Paka Paka in Argen:na, EVision and BeIN in the Middle East and Showmax in Africa. All licensing and merchandising opportuni:es, including master toy, publishing and stage show rights, are now available for discussion. EDITION 32 · TOY HOBBY & LICENSING FAIR


e r u t a N y b d e r i p Ins Loved by of generations for Australians ars over 100 ye

Inspired by e nature and th ush Australian b

Proceeds proudly support Northcott and the Cerebral Palsy Alliance, two leading charities assisting children living with disability and their families.

Over 30 d licensing an g merchandisin par tners yer, Ranged at M ig W, Cotton On, B st Australia Po and other ilers leading reta

For partnership, licensing & retail enquiries, contact: Rosalie May, rosalie@merchantwise.com Š The Northcott Society and Cerebral Palsy Alliance 2020

May Gibbs – Inspired by Nature


Iconic Australian author and illustrator May Gibbs con:nues to capture the hearts and imagina:ons of genera:ons of Australians with her lovable bush characters, which hold a special place in the Australian consciousness.

Publishing is at the heart of the May Gibbs brand with May Gibbs’ original books, Gumnut Babies and Snugglepot and Cuddlepie never out of print for over 100 years. Publishing partner Scholas:c Australia has con:nued to expand its catalogue of licensed May Gibbs storybooks for children with May Gibbs becoming their third best-selling licensed property. In 2020, Scholas:c Australia will also begin publishing a newly imagined range of May Gibbs classic stories, ensuring that every Australian child has the opportunity to experience these classic tales. New product ranges and partnerships

Today, May Gibbs is a fashion and lifestyle brand inspired by the Australian bush with a unique licensing program of over 30 partners across publishing, fashion, homewares, toys, sta:onery and collectables. May Gibbs partners with leading Australian brands to bring the stories and characters to life for fans of all ages.

A host of other products, partnerships and retail ac:va:ons will con:nue throughout 2020.

Myer Christmas Windows 2019 May Gibbs’ Gumnut Babies were the stars of the 2019 Myer Christmas windows in Melbourne and Brisbane. The famous annual event has been running in Melbourne for 64 years and a\racts an es:mated 1.4 million people. The handcraNed installa:on featured 136 Gumnut characters, 102 of which were animated. Gumnut Babies theming con:nued in-store and in the Myer GiNorium. The success of the May Gibbs by Ecology homewares collec:on has seen two collec:ons released across tableware, napery, home decor and gardening over the past two years. A brand-new collec:on developed exclusively for Australia Post will launch in April 2020 to celebrate the 80th anniversary of release of The Complete Adventures of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie. Crea:ve, high end Australian fashion brand Romance was Born con:nues to release exci:ng new capsule collec:ons for women and men, uniquely showcasing the art of May Gibbs.



The partnership with Walnut Melbourne con:nues in 2020 with brand-new winter and summer collec:ons. The collec:ons will again feature May Gibbs illustra:ons on Walnut’s best-selling children’s canvas shoes and apparel. In January 2020, May Gibbs launched at Co7on On with a range of apparel and pyjamas for babies and kids. The collec:on proved popular with many styles quickly selling out online and in stores. A second collec:on is in development for winter 2020.

A new outdoor stage show of Snugglepot & Cuddlepie is in development with NSW based theatre company, Eaton Gorge Theatre Company. First shows to premiere at Australian Botanic Gardens Mount Annan in July followed by Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney and Blue Mountains Botanic Gardens in October. The brand con:nues to be supported with strong marke:ng and publicity campaigns, along with con:nued growth of the May Gibbs Official Online Store and social media communi:es.

Be7y Boop – Forever Fabulous Be\y Boop knows how to make an impression. For almost 90 years, the glamourous interna:onal icon has sung, sashayed, and “boop-oop-a-dooped” past rules and conven:ons, unafraid to take risks or set trends. King Features has over 150+ licensees globally and has a highly engaged social media fanbase with over 1.6M+ follows. There have been a wide arrange of collabora:ons with highend fashion brands including Lazy Oaf, Bathing Ape, Moschino, Undiz, Zac Posen, Bellerose and more. In October 2019, Nordstrom debuted an exclusive Nike x Olivia Kim capsule collec:on starring Be\y Boop. Another anniversary partnership was with skateboarding brand HUF for a line of hoodies, jackets, tees, socks and more including a Be\y Boop x HUF skateboard deck. Looking ahead for 2020, Be\y Boop product launches in Australia include a sleepwear collec:on from Hot Springs, a collec:ble stamp pack from Australia Post and a new Pop! Vinyl from Funko.

Popeye – Strong To The Finish Popeye is tough, he’s fit, and he’s got grit. He’s a rugged sailor who is always up to the challenge and never backs down. Popeye is the embodiment of strength, and inspires us all to work hard, be persistent, and be “strong to the finish” – with the help of a heNy amount of spinach. King Features manages over 150+ licensees around the world. Popeye has an engaged audience on social media with over 9.7M follows across Twi\er, Instagram, Facebook and the official Popeye and Friends YouTube channel. There have been successful collabora:ons with highend fashion brands including HUF, Scotch & Soda, Bathing Ape, Filson, Stayreal, ZARA and more.



• • • •

Celebrating 90th Anniversary in 2020! Over 150 licensees worldwide 1.6M follows across all socials Many powerful brand collaborations including Betsey Johnson, Nike, Lazy Oaf, Bathing Ape and Moschino

• The cult classic 1980 film celebrates 40 years of saving the universe in 2020 • Robust toy and collectibles programs with Funko, BIF BANG POW, Chronicle Collectibles, MONDO, Big Chief Studios • New animated feature in development from Fox-Disney and acclaimed director Taika Watiti

• He’s tough, he’s fit and he’s got grit! • 150+ licensees around the world • Highly engaged fan base of 9.7+ million social media followers • Successful collaborations with brands including HUF, Scotch & Soda, Bathing Ape, STAYREAL, ZARA, Benetton and many more

For licensing opportunities, please contact: Kerryn McCormack, Licensing Director P: +61 3 9520 1000 E: kerryn@merchantwise.com W: merchantwise.com

©2020 King Features Syndicate, Inc./Fleischer Studios, Inc. TM Hearst Holdings, Inc./Fleischer Studios, Inc. ©2020 King Features Syndicate, Inc. TM Hearst Holdings, Inc.

into our collec:ve consciousness through pop culture, Hollywood movies and the classic Monopoly boardgame. TFL is quite simply ‘the London brand’.

This month, a new collabora:on with Popeye x Bene\on launches with a limited-edi:on Popeye and Friends collec:on and also names Popeye the sailor man as its special environmental ambassador. Phantom “Phundraising” for Bushfire Relief ChronicleChamber and King Features have collaborated with the assistance and generosity of a wide variety of high-profile Phantom ar:sts from around the globe, to publish a book of illustra:ons to “phundraise” for Australia’s bushfire relief, with 100% of net proceeds being donated to Red Cross Australia. Phantom illustrators have illustrated a unique Phantom image linked in some way to the bushfire crisis and recovery efforts. Each ar:st can also sell/auc:on/raffle the original art as a further personal dona:on.

London Underground – Mind the Gap! London a\racts an astonishing 40 million tourists per year, including over 600,000 Australians. Aussies have a deep and abiding connec:on with London and the UK.

TFL offers a thriving licensing and merchandising opportunity which currently boasts over 50 London Underground partners on-board across a wide variety of product categories. The extensive brand style guide includes over 150 years of assets including poster archive, iconic logos, photography, old :cket designs, seat fabric pa\erns and globally recognised roundels and tube maps. Licensing opportuni:es for TFL are now available for discussion in Australia and New Zealand.

Represen:ng many of the world’s biggest names in music for Australia and New Zealand, Merchantwise Licensing is the go-to for band merchandising and licensing. The Beatles – Let It Be – 50 years Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson is working on a new Beatles Let It Be documentary, accessing 55 hours of never-before-seen footage and 140 hours of audio made available from their 1969 recording sessions.

Eager Beatlemaniacs can expect to learn more about Peter Jackson’s un:tled Let It Be film, as well as the rerelease of the original documentary classic, in :me for the fiNieth anniversary of the album’s original release, which falls on 8 May 2020.

The London Underground network or the Tube, operated by Transport for London (TFL), has been an integral part of London’s history for over 150 years and transports 1.4 billion passengers per year. The roundel is an iconic symbol for London and its transport system. The first roundel was created in 1908, originally known as the bar and circle. More than 110 years later, it is one of the most dis:nc:ve and recognisable symbols in the world. Sta:on names such as Oxford Circus, Paddington, Kings Cross, Covent Garden, Wimbledon and Waterloo have been etched EDITION 32 · TOY HOBBY & LICENSING FAIR


A wide variety of licensing partners con:nue to celebrate The Beatles in Australia and NZ with new product releases, including puzzles from Hinkler Books, giNs and novel:es from Rubber Road, posters and wall art from Impact Rock and a new range of homewares and drinkware from Licensing Essen:als featuring Yellow Submarine. Co\on On’s partnership with The Beatles con:nues with ongoing ranges of apparel, sleepwear, accessories and giNing.

MANHEAD roster now available in Australia and NZ for the first Ime Merchantwise Licensing is pleased to be represen:ng Manhead in Australia and NZ. Manhead is a worldwide merchandise company catering to the music and entertainment industry. For over twelve years Manhead has been one of the leading, independently owned music and entertainment merchandise companies specialising in touring, e-commerce, crea:ve, retail and licensing merchandise. Ar:sts in the roster include Australia’s very own SIA, the B-52’s, Train, Weezer, Fall Out Boy, EELS and Panic! At The Disco.

AC/DC – BACK IN BLACK 40th Anniversary AC/DC was formed in Australia in 1973 by brothers Malcom and Angus Young, and with their no-nonsense blues-based rock developed into one of the most successful touring and recording ar:sts on the planet. The band’s global sales exceed 200 million albums. 1980’s Back in Black one of the highest – selling albums of all :me, with 50 million copies sold. 2020 marks the 40th anniversary of this much revered classic. AC/DC holds the record for the most :ckets sold on an Australian tour by a local act and their music con:nues to be discovered by new audiences – their 10 biggest songs on Spo:fy have collec:vely had over 2.5 billion streams. The Thunderstruck video has been watched over 700 million :mes on YouTube. A recent ar:cle in the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun ranked AC/DC has the best Australian band of all :me. With one of the most recognizable logos in pop culture and myriad legacy designs their merchandising results are legendary. A variety of AC/DC apparel, drinkware, giNs and accessories are available globally and in the local market, with new licensing opportuni:es available for discussion.



Other Bands and ArIsts Other great bands and ar:sts available for licensing from Merchantwise include Britney Spears, Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Def Leppard, Aerosmith, Wu Tang, Nirvana, the Foo Fighters and many more.







For further information visit merchantwise.com





The Evolution of Toy Networx The toy industry continues to be challenged across a number of metrics including declining birth rates, reducing shop fronts, changing consumer shopping patterns and technology-based products, which compete against more traditional toy-based ranges. As is always the case, change also creates opportunity for smart people and businesses that can see how they need to interact with their customer. Toy Networx has been a more traditional wholesaling business for many years now. It has managed to find a niche in the market where they have been able to do business by representing global brands such as Hasbro & Mattel (and others) and generic toy brands to compliment their portfolio. Recent changes to the ownership and vision for the business have seen Ben Bliss, the current owner and Managing Director, look to create a new CEO position in the business. He has since engaged Jonathan Byrnes (a former Hasbro & Funtastic Executive) to head-up the organisation to develop a new business model, which will be sustainable into the future. Jonathan and team have been hard at work re-branding and building an exclusive product portfolio, which will ultimately give them a point of difference in the market. We spoke to Jonathan leading into the Toy Fair to get an update on how these plans are coming together: Jonathan, first off, can you give us a bit of background on your career and how you came to join Toy Networx?

in a regular segment on Channel 10’s “The Living Room.� Now I have taken on a new challenge and bought into the Toy Networx business.

Thanks Tony, sure. I started life in New Zealand working for Farmers Department stores and quickly joined their internal trainee management program – a replica of the Harrods model in London. In this program I learnt every aspect of a large retail department store business, from store receiving to buying and merchandising through to large format store management. I was one of the youngest managers ever to manage a store. Then I moved into FMCG and worked for Coca Cola Amatil in the grocery division managing supermarkets, covering all aspects of the sales process and local in store marketing programs.

In terms of the task ahead of you, how do you see the toy business and market both here in Australia and overseas?

Fast forward a few years after living in Europe and working in various roles I settled in Melbourne back in 2003. This is where I started my Toy career working at Hasbro in the field – managing Vic Tas independents. I loved working in the field and getting to know all the amazing people face to face, that make up our industry. A few years on, I made the move to Funtastic where I looked after Kmart and Myer. This was an exciting role which I enjoyed very much. Then my children came along and I took a year off to be with them in their early years. My other passion is property and this is where I stayed for several years while the boys were young, (operating my own business) renovating, building and all things property related. This included being featured

I see the toy business and market both here and overseas moving into challenging times ahead. With so many external global factors such as the current coronavirus outbreak, political unrest in Hong Kong and many other global and local economic factors in play; I think it is really important for our industry to remain true to our heritage but also drive innovation in product development. I also feel there will be a big push into more sustainable product development, and I think environmentally conscious consumers, suppliers and manufacturers will drive the innovation in our industry moving forward. I don’t think enough emphasis is placed on this currently within our industry.





Where do you believe Toy Networx fits into this equation and what are your immediate opportunities for growth? We are the bridge between suppliers and customers, large and small. We hold a unique position in the market where we offer traditional one on one service to the independent market. We are easy to deal with, have the latest in electronic ordering technology, we will split cartons and ship individual items and our customers can visit us and buy off the shelves. All of this, while providing the best traditional dedicated service our customers have come to love and expect from Toy Networx. A key focus for me since joining the business has been to explore and implement growth, but also diversity. As a result, I am really excited to announce our new strategic partnership with Hinkler Books. From March 1st 2020 Toy Networx will be the key National Independent distributor for Hinkler. This is an incredible opportunity for us, bringing a number of new opportunities to the Toy Networx business. It opens up many new accounts for us as a business, while allowing us to offer a truly diverse range of products. I am looking forward to offering this new range to both our existing and new toy and newsagency customers. I believe when you see the entire range at Toyfair, you will agree too. Our local market is not large, so I am working very hard to create more partnerships such as the Hinkler partnership above. We are actively exploring other growth opportunities and hopefully will have more exciting announcements further into 2020 and beyond. In terms of your impending re-brand, how did this come about and what do you think it will bring to your business? Tony, as you know a brand identity is crucial to any business. Toy Networx has been through many evolutions over its almost 50 year history under a variety of trading names and iterations. My vision for the business for the next 50 years is that we are current, on trend and relevant to a changing market. I felt the re brand was a vital component to relaunch the “all new� Toy Networx into the future. (it’s also a great excuse to get Ben to wear a suit to the Toyfair dinner! There’s a first for everything I guess) We understand that you have been hard at work developing and building a new product portfolio. Would you mind giving us an overview of what this looks like?



We have a major focus on developing our own exclusive range for the Australian & New Zealand market that incorporates both our own product innovation and in some cases licensing agreements. We will have on offer exclusive brands which will not be competing with mass market. While we will offer main skus, our focus is to grow independents’ range and offering. As part of this project, we have developed a great range of low cost, good margin Volume driver items. We are launching a brand new Fisher Price Barbie & Hot wheels range which we will have on show at Toy Fair. What will be the point of difference to the customer by investing in the Toy Networx service model? We have, and always will remain true to the Toy Networx heritage – being a cash and carry/wholesale business. With our new partnership with Hinkler, and continuing partnership with Five Stars International and other innovation underway we will have the ability to offer more product than ever before, across multiple brands and categories. Our aim is to make the customer experience easy and fast, while providing our customers the platform to be able to order, source and deal with us for all products from many suppliers with one delivery / consolidation in the easiest way possible to suit their needs. That may be a fax (yes we still get them!) a phone call, a visit from a rep, an email online or carrier pigeon. We will cater to all and any requirements because we understand the diversity of the market and the intricacies in the way our customers work.

We understand you are also developing an exclusive catalogue and promotional offer, can you tell us a little about this? We produce up to 20 catalogues per annum. Catered to all sizes of retail business. We make it very simple and easy for our customers to participate in our catalogue program. We offer a great range of items across these catalogues mixing brands and generic items as well as for this year planned, our own development & exclusive items. With good margin, ease of ordering and strong growth Year on Year - a key focus for 2020 is to expand our catalogue program into new areas with increased innovation and product offering.

It’s good for our readers to get an insight into the nature of your rebrand and how they can partner with you. Your brand new stand at Toy Fair (K37) will be an ideal opportunity for potential partners and partners to visit you and discuss business. We also believe you will be hosting an exclusive party at the show as a thank you to the industry? Our party initially came about aimed at the independent trade. As it has evolved over the years it has become a bit of an institution and something we are known for at the Toy Fair. This year will be our biggest yet and we sincerely look forward to sharing a great night out with the amazing people that make up our industry.

As part of your rebrand, we believe you are planning on re organizing your online platform to work in concert with your more traditional direct services? We have been very pro active over the years in the technology space and we run an extremely good online ordering system for our customers. We understand that our customers are small businesses and may not have the time to see a rep or take a phone call to place an order. Our system lets our customers order at a convenient time to them via the web or an app. The technology space is one I am personally focused on to drive innovation for our business and make it even better, with more expansion and capabilities to come. As part of your re organisation, you have also been building a new team. Can you tell us a little about your new team members and what they will bring to your growth plans? We have contracted David Clancy to head up our new specialty division. He is well known to the industry and brings to our business over 22 years worth of experience. From humble beginnings starting at Target, through to Lego and Funtastic we are excited to have him on board. Projecting forward beyond the next 12 months, where do you see the business landing in a market which continues to change on a daily basis? I have incredibly high aspirations for the “New Toy Networx” My vision for the business is to continue to do what we do and continually improve on our process. Drive innovation, explore new technology and bring a fresh and sustainable product range to the market.






Popcultcha & Funko Help Make A Difference The environmental and human devastation that has been faced by Australia over recent months is a wake up call to us all that we must start looking after our planet and that there are things that we can do to help prevent history repeating itself, if we use a little common sense and make sure that politics doesn’t get in the way of a good outcome. A recent initiative by Ash Howard and his team at Popcultcha in Geelong (backed by Funko) has seen the creation of an exclusive Pop! Vinyl — Bushfire Heroes with Koala Pop! Vinyl figure. This is a good example of what can happen when people put their heads together to help others and in this case, all of the profits from the sale of this item will be donated to the RSPCA to help assist the animal population effected by our recent bushfires.

Ash, how did this idea begin, was it an Aussie development from your end?

To have it supported globally is a really cool thing, have you seen strong support from your customers all over the world?

I think it was a truly collaborative effort. Our team here were flicking around some ideas and when we bounced them off the team at Funko they were immediately on the same page and in particular, Funko CEO Brian Mariotti was on the front foot to offer their help in any way they can. Our in-house design team including Natasha Kapustic and Adam Henderson played a pivotal role in the overall design of the Pop! Vinyl.

Yep we sure have. We have sold thousands upon thousands of these figures to collectors all over the world. Popcultcha is known as a Funko Pop! Vinyl destination store and global collectors seek us out anyway, so we were well placed to execute this program to hit people internationally. We have sold this Bushfire Heroes Pop! To Israel, Poland, UK, Spain, France, USA, Taiwan and everywhere in between. It has been a humbling experience to see a world of collectors and supporters jump on board such a worthwhile endeavor, we couldn’t be more thrilled.

This initiative really hits the right spot; our wildlife is vulnerable and deserves some assistance. How did you arrive at the RSPCA as your charity of choice? We had been closely watching the fund raising activities across all charities and we landed on the RSPCA as we recognized the work that was ahead of them. The RSPCA’s work will be weeks, months and years of ongoing support, recovery and rehabilitation and we have a profound respect for the work that is being done out there. We know that the money we have raised will go directly toward these efforts when and where it is most needed.



That is fabulous that Funko were happy to back you. This sort of thing does not normally happen? Worldwide exclusive items are certainly not something that Funko ordinarily promote. However, this was an exceptional circumstance where all of the profits are going to a charitable endeavor that is near and dear to all of us. Our Bushfire Crisis has been an ongoing news story in North America, so it was already a talking point around the water cooler. We have been working closely with Funko for over 17+ years and in fact, were one of the first retailers to ever sell a Pop! Vinyl figure, not to mention all of the products that preceded this phenomenon! We were there around the Bobble Head craze, so there is a great history and trust between us… I guess you could say we kinda grew up together in the “collectables industry”. Do you have a feeling for how many may be taken up and what will that mean in terms of funds, which will go to the RSPCA? We don’t at this stage, it is a moving target. We can happily report that we will be making a donation well in excess of $500,000 to the

RSPCA in March 2020 which will represent the profits on all pre-orders recorded to date. It has been an amazing response and Popcultcha, Funko and the RSPCA could not be happier with how this has been received thus far. However, at the time of interview, this has been just week one of pre-sales so we expect this number to continue to climb! Mate, these sorts of things need to be handled delicately so as not to become a commercial platform. Were you conscious of this when you made the call to proceed? For sure, as I eluded to previously, we have worked with Funko for near on 20 years, there is a great deal of trust between us and when you have good people on both sides working together for a common goal, the result is usually going to be exceptional. This is our 27th year in the collectables industry, I feel like we are a well regarded brand and retailer and we are constantly trying to improve the way we do things. I have faith in our business to execute this really well, as we have the infrastructure and logistics knowhow to get these collectables safely into the hands of collectors all over the world and more importantly, the funds into the hands of the

RSPCA when they need it most. We intend on making donations in the first week of every month to account for our ongoing pre-sales up and until the product lands in our warehouse and is sold through. At the end of the day, we just sell toys and collectables, its nothing compared to the sacrifices and work that the everyday heroes out there are doing. This is the least we can do to help! Ash, hopefully your donations will make a huge difference to helping and supporting our wildlife. We will keep in touch and hopefully you can let us know some of the positive outcomes. For sure, we would be happy to check in with you when the product arrives and we start shipping them out in June 2020. Funko have done a fantastic job with the design and we are pretty stoked to be part of something worthwhile like this, as it really puts what we do on a day to day basis in perspective when you can do it for a worthwhile cause.

funko.com popcultcha.com.au




Australia’s Classic Farming Game

A New Era for Squatter


Squatter has enjoyed 60 years of providing fun and education to kids and families all over Australia and now for the very first time we come to the Melbourne Toy Hobby & Licensing Fair with two new and exciting formats to add the Squatter family of products. We have thought carefully about how we can infuse new opportunities around Squatter for our many retail partners and also how we bring new play patterns for the consumer. We have settled on Squatter Compact and our brand new card game Squatter Mates for 3—8 year olds. These two new formats will provide retailers of all persuasions who previously did not have the space to stock our traditional format and also offer the toy stockist the opportunity to now invest in the Squatter family of products. Squatter Compact and Squatter Mates are perfect companion products to keep the whole family playing Squatter everywhere: boat, plane, holiday, house, tent and coffee shop just to name a few. These two new formats also play beautifully into the tourist, gift and educational sectors. Ideal for convenience store ranging!

Squatter is continuing to extend it’s appeal to younger and more mobile players and Squatter Compact brings all the great features of the classic game in an all-new versatile edition for 2—4 players along with travel friendly packaging. squatter.com.au








JASNOR AUSTRALIA Wow! Stuff announces Jasnor (Australia) as distribution partner for ANZ of the radical new collectible range Wow! Pods Wow! Stuff is describing its latest launch as a ‘radical’ collectible for fans of character brands. Wow! Pods are unlike any other collectible in the toy market. They have a radically different play pattern to the traditional waves of collectibles, which kids collect but then tire of in time. Wow! Pods feature a unique ‘Swipe to Light’ function which reveals a mystery image either on the character or on the inside of its Pod. They also incorporate a smart interlocking system that allows collectors to construct incredible displays. Collect, connect, display! James Thurlow, Jasnor’s CEO, said: “We are extremely excited to be a part of this radical new collectible range, targeted at children and tweens between 5-15, who are huge fans of the character brands they love. The roll out is exciting and includes many popular licensed properties including major Hollywood franchise brands and characters from popular Netflix series. We are sure young fans will be thrilled with the line-up!�

2020 is a busy year for the team at Jasnor with a strong focus on several hot new properties! Leading the charge are new ranges from Hot WheelsTM, the radical new collectible range WOW! PODS, pre-school favourites, The Wiggles and a perfect plush line up from the much anticipated sequel Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway, in cinemas March 2020. With the Hot WheelsTM Maker Kitz you do all the building but without the need for glue, scissors or batteries! Simply pop out the precut panels and assemble the tough snap fit parts. The robust assembled cars are tough enough to survive the race and even the gnarliest of stunts. A perfect gift for someone to build, race and collect. The Wiggles are back with some fantastic new Wiggly additions. Lunch bags and drink bottles have returned to The Wiggles Mealtime range, joined by a bright and colourful new Safari collection with several fun designs across a number of practical formats. A new Fairy Emma 50cm Cuddle Doll will be launched at Toy Fair, along with a fun and engaging interactive motorized Puzzle Track Playset – sure to get kids wiggling with uncontainable excitement!

Peter Rabbit 2 based on the universally beloved pop culture icon returns to the big screen with a new movie releasing March 2020. Peter Rabbit has proven to be a popular choice with children. Look out for Jasnor’s fantastic plush range in stores now! Jasnor is a leading distributor and manufacturer of popular licensed toys and gifts, offering an extensive line-up of highly sought after brands across multiple product categories which include; pre-school toys, gifts for baby, infant feeding and mealtime, plush and seasonal collections. Their distribution portfolio includes The Wiggles, WOW! PODS, Peter Rabbit, Hot Wheels, PJ Masks, Hey Duggee, and Pusheen to name a few. Be sure to visit Jasnor at the Australian Toy Hobby & Licensing Fair in March to see their comprehensive collection of iconic characters and exciting new line-up for 2020






U. GAMES AUSTRALIA U. Games Australia is gearing up for its biggest year yet! 2020 brings exciting new licenses, board game developments and a whole new look for the business – which can all be seen at Stand L21 at the 2020 Australian Toy Hobby and Licensing Fair in March. The recent announcement of U. Games Australia’s fresh new look ushers in a year of local and global events for the Australian arm of the University Games Corporation. In January, UG Studios, a livestreaming, high-octane content channel dedicated to games and puzzles, will offer a series of interviews, game shows, game reviews and game demos to game players and game buyers around the world. With correspondents in San Francisco, London and Sydney, there will be three different accents to listen to on a dedicated YouTube channel. At The Australian Toy Hobby and Licensing Fair in March, visitors will have the opportunity to preview the year ahead. Bestselling games such as Stupid Deaths and 5 Second Rule will be expanded with companion titles – which will be sure to grow retail board game sections.

The highly popular Australian ABC TV quiz show Hard Quiz, hosted by Tom Gleeson, is also being adapted into a board game. Players can enjoy over 1300 real questions from the show as they move through an Expert Round, Tom’s Round, People’s Round and a final Hard-off. With a focus on fun and learning through play, U. Games Australia will also be expanding their games and puzzles range for children. New games include Dog Man, Attack of the Fleas – based on the globally bestselling book series by Dav Pilkey. For pre-schoolers there are new developments in the First 100 and The Wiggles brands. STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) is also a core focus. With key brands Wild! Science and National Geographic, retailers can find quality science kits across a variety of topics – making it simple to coordinate powerful science sections in store. Andrew McCosker, newly appointed Managing Director of U. Games Australia, is looking forward to an eventful 2020 – “We have a very passionate and dedicated team who are pumped to showcase our latest and greatest. We’re anticipating big things and we’re really looking forward to seeing everyone in Melbourne!�

For more information visit www.ugames.com.au EDITION 32 ¡ TOY HOBBY & LICENSING FAIR



w e N l l A

Fashion Dolls

For Licensing Opportunities in Australia and New Zealand please contact:

Jason Wang

For any sales enquires please contact The Brand Exchange: customerservice@thebrandexchange.com.au

Evolution Licensing Email - jason@jwbrand.com.au Phone Number - +61 401 087 135 Š2020 Just Play, LLC.

According to Downsey Edition 8 — Gamechangers This article was written by Ian Downes, Director at Start Licensing Limited, for The Bugg Report

I spent many happy childhood days at The Oval in London. The home of Surrey Cricket Club and a Test Match ground. Back in the 1970s as a youngster you could walk into the ground on the practice day before the Test Match started and mingle with the players. I did this in 1975 and met the Australian touring team of the time including legendary bowlers Lillee and Thomson plus other great players like Max Walker, Dougie Walters and Ashley Mallett. Lifetime memories. Switch to 2020 and thinking about events like cricket’s Big Bash and the soon to launch Hundred Tournament I wonder how would these guys have prospered. Well I think they would have adapted and become successful in the new formats. The lesson is adaptability. The pace of change in cricket seems to me to be matched by that in licensing. Licensing has to adapt to changing times. I started working in licensing in the early 1990s — the licensing market is totally different now and the challenges very different. Fresh challenges are being faced in the UK whether that is retail closures and retail slowdown or finding a trading life after Brexit. It is tough to do business at the moment. But that said licensing has a lot to offer. Good IP can make a big impact in the market. In challenging times borrowing someone’s brand can be cost effective and can stretch your reach. We probably need to convey this better to the wider business community. Collectively we could all help ourselves by investing in case studies and rallying around a ‘Licensing Works’ message.

Success stories are out there. New to licensing companies like Jardinopia and Primus who specialise in garden gifts have found that licensing has opened new doors for them and brought them new customers. Primus started in licensing with Shaun the Sheep. They create garden statues. This has gone well for them and they have recently announced a new deal with the UK charity RSPB. Primus have developed a range of metal bird sculptures with the charity. They have used licensing to open new retail channels and connect with new consumers. In tougher times it is sensible for brand owners to invest in well proven properties. Warner Bros have done a great job in supporting and developing the Friends brand. Capable licensees such as Danilo and Half Moon Bay have created great ranges. Warner Bros have integrated the licensing programme into ‘of the moment’ activations like Friends Fest. Social media has helped IP owners manage their fan and consumer communities. Licensing needs to be more social savvy. This is a big opportunity to add value to licensing programmes. Furthermore licensing programmes shouldn’t operate in solos - there needs to be an integrated approach to business.

In my own work Bliss Home have done a great job developing a homewares programme with chef Nadiya Hussain. This has involved a lot of face to face meetings with design developed in partnership with Nadiya. For Nadiya she wants to be able to point to product she has helped developed and has an authenticity. Quick fix licensing is probably a thing of the past. There needs to be more commitment to planning, bespoke design and crucially understanding the audiences who will buy your product. Rather like Dennis Lillee or Jeff Thomson licensing can be a gamechanger. They were gamechangers in the 1970s and no doubt they would be gamechangers now. But they would have adapted their game. Let’s hope Licensing PLC continues to adapt and change. Ian Downes Start Licensing Limited twitter.com/StartLicensing

Licensees have woken up to opportunities outside the mainstream. They are seeking opportunities that open up new retail doors or fresh consumer engagement. Heritage licensing is a great example of this. Celebrity based licensing programmes are doing well.



2020 Marketing Predictions Get your brand on the front foot with these 2020 marketing predictions

Christie Nicholas heads up Kids Business Communications who are a leading voice In shaping brands that speak to Mums. Christie joins The Bugg Report as an exclusive guest writer and will share important Intel that will help your brand prosper in a changing market.

Would you like to know what successful brands will do in 2020 to access and build relationships with more Mums? I’ve summarized a few of their strategies for you.

DISCOVER 5 WAYS TO BOOST YOUR IMPACT AND GET MORE ROI... 1. Successful brands are trying new initiatives, or approaching the usual initiatives in different ways. This year, it’s about challenging the status quo. Lesson for marketers: Review every marketing initiative you used to do, or plan to and ask yourself (or us) “How can we improve?â€? Sometimes it’s not what you’re doing that’s hindering success — it could be how you are doing it. 2. Successful brands are implementing measures to amplify brand advocacy. Customers today demand to be wowed.  Lesson for marketers: Be the brand that “Wow’sâ€? them — this is a strategy, not an accident.  3. Successful brands are so excited about what value they will deliver to improve Mums’ lives — it’s palpable, and it starts from the top. Lesson for marketers: If you — and the whole team — are not pumped and confident about what you have in-store will deliver what the customer needs and more‌ why should she be? 4. Successful brands are shaping a thought-out, multi-platform campaign — there’s no quick fix. Success will come from laser targeting, via a collective effort of amazing initiatives (some big/some small), done well.    Lesson for marketers: Given mums are influenced 50% by online touchpoints and 50% by offline touchpoint, start by shaping a campaign with a balanced mix of online and offline marketing initiatives and then merge them together for impactful results. 5. Successful brands are boosting their learning. Elite performers know you can’t make decision based on assumptions. Lesson for marketers: Get to know your customer today — she changes every year. Find out what she needs, how she feels about your brand versus your competitor, or ask the experts. Only then you can deliver the goods. 

Christie Nicholas Managing Director Kids Business Communications Kids Business Communications is Australia’s leading agency shaping brands that speak to Mums. We exist to lead mum-centric brands to next-level brilliance. Mums largely hold the cards to household spending. The way brands engage with today’s Mums is critical to their success. Kids Business Communications was founded a decade ago by Christie Nicholas, after a career representing global brands that all sold products to Mums, to build an agency that exclusively focused on understanding Mums, her buying behavior and what brands must do to build fruitful relationship. We’ll power your brand forward. kidsbusiness.com.au

AS THE SAYING GOES “IF NOTHING CHANGES, NOTHING CHANGES�... Here if you need anything and wishing you a rewarding 2020




Sally Pseudonym Sally Pseudonym is a guest writer focussing on what’s going on in the toy industry and written in a top-line FORMAT. Sally gives you some general information about the ups and downs of the Toy Biz...

â­• Last year finished flat and the enthusiasm â­• LEGO finished at number one and was



for Black Friday/Cyber Monday reached fever pitch, however it brought sales forward somewhat from December.... Black Friday/Cyber Monday is here to stay and any retailer worth their salt really has to participate Online shopping continues to grow, however the bricks & mortar retailers in general have caught up with the pure plays and whilst we don’t have accurate figures my gut feel is that the balance is shifting back to the bricks & mortar guys’ online business‌ Wesfarmers purchase of Catch of the Day will certainly take their learning’s to Kmart and Target to strengthen their online business, which is generally running at 5-8 % of the total Landlords will eventually realise this (we live in hope) as retail continues to struggle and doors close... Kaufland pulling out is a big wake up call and as sales in brick & mortar steadily decrease, so should rents (not good if you are a shareholder)

â­• â­• â­• â­• â­•


driven by Technic, Creator, Frozen, Harry Potter and the LEGO movie Mattel finished at number two (what an effort with Barbie finishing as the number one brand up over 30% and Hot Wheels still in positive growth, and Little People up as well) Hasbro were number three‌ Spin Master was number four‌ (what a great effort albeit from a low base) but number four spot is great for the Company Hunter Leisure came in fifth, driven by the insane amount of Laser Command sales MGA is number 10, however it’s a new Company and expect them to grow significantly... LOL was down on last year, however the collectable business was around 10% of the toy business last year and it is still a huge number Outdoor toys were affected by drought, bushfires and water restrictions; as a result the category was down double digit

â­• Action figures, crafts, dolls and LEGO â­• â­• â­• â­• â­• â­• â­•

were the only categories showing any growth last year‌ LOL was down but still a credible number two to Barbie and if you were not on Frozen and Toy Story you lived in a cave! Paw Patrol showed positive growth, however PJ Masks has fallen away Full marks to Moose for their Bluey execution which looks great in-store and is selling extremely well The Wiggles were up double digit‌ the team is one of the hardest working teams in the business and they deserve all of their success PokÊmon was the comeback king up over 40% last year Fortnight had a credible increase thanks to Nerf The Ooshies Lion King promotion (which took place at Woolworths) is rumoured as being one of their biggest of all time! This collaboration between Woolworths and HeadStart has set the standard for any future promotions!

Looking Forward


đ&#x;¤” Barbie will continue to dominate... (not sure about the new skin rash Barbie!) đ&#x;¤” LOL will still be up there... however will most likely decline in sales đ&#x;¤” LEGO Star wars, Harry Potter Creator and Technic were still driving sales in January đ&#x;¤” LEGO was in the number one spot in January đ&#x;¤” Hasbro number two đ&#x;¤” Mattel number three đ&#x;¤” MGA moved up a notch to 9th spot and LOL

đ&#x;¤” Well you really have to be at Toy Fair to see what is on offer! đ&#x;¤” Frozen will continue to perform if the past is any guide đ&#x;¤” Barbie will be the hot ticket but don’t underestimate new LOL launches from MGA đ&#x;¤” LEGO will go from strength to strength‌ their product development is amazing and you will also see that at Toy Fair đ&#x;¤” Trolls 2 for Easter will be a great shot in the arm for the School Holiday period đ&#x;¤” Minions won’t be as strong as Toy Story was last year but will resonate mid-year đ&#x;¤” Bluey, Bingo and the family will continue to be outstanding đ&#x;¤” Toy Story will do it tough and Disney Princess, as a licence will be steam rolled by Frozen đ&#x;¤” Lego Star Wars new releases are being well received đ&#x;¤” Keep an eye out for Blippi and Kindi Kids

đ&#x;¤” đ&#x;¤”

was still in the top five‌ what an effort after all these years of growth! Not surprisingly Crayola was in the top 10 with back-to-school The market in January was relatively flat



Helping your baby from the painful teething stage through to the toddler years


Follow us

Wide Eyes News from the Tube This article is written by a leading industry expert and is focused on providing a quick snapshot of the television & animation market including challenges and opportunities...

đ&#x;‘€ Over the last decade whilst ABC Kids continued to own the

pre-school space on Australian free to air TV, viewing of short form kids content on YouTube has been growing at an astonishing pace and making superstars out of properties like Baby Bus, Baby Shark, Chu Chu, CKN Toys, Cocomelon, Blippi, Bounce Patrol, Debbie Doo, Little Baby Bum, Ryan’s World and many others not far behind.

đ&#x;‘€ The two most popular genres of these short form videos on YouTube are musical nursery rhymes and unboxing videos including toy reviews.

đ&#x;‘€ In September last year YouTube was fined US $170 million by the US Federal Trade Commission for violating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and as part of the settlement, YouTube agreed from January 2020 to stop targeting ads on all content that is made specifically for kids viewing.

đ&#x;‘€ The impact that this will have on the advertising revenue received by the owners of these kids content sites is expected to be very significant and most site owners are anticipating a reduction in their YouTube ad revenue of over 50%.

đ&#x;‘€ In the nursery rhymes category, the YouTube algorithm rewards the đ&#x;‘€ With the artists performing in these kids content videos facing a most popular songs with additional automatic plays and penalises less popular original content by not automatically playing this content which has had the consequence of all the YouTube artists making endless versions of the same nursery rhymes such as Five Finger Family, Wheels on the Bus and Baby Shark.

đ&#x;‘€ The size of the global audience for these kids content videos is

staggering – for example on the US site Cocomelon videos are viewed 100 million times a day with the total number of global views now over 50 billion – on the UK site Little Baby Bum nursery rhymes are viewed 20 million times a day with a total of 22 billion global views – on the Indian site Chu Chu videos are viewed 14 million times a day with a total of 20 billion global views and on the Australian Bounce Patrol site videos are viewed 10 million times a day with a total of 7 billion global views.

đ&#x;‘€ Up until January this year, YouTube had been playing targeted ads

large decrease in their YouTube ad revenue and with the high cost of producing content for YouTube, since the September COPPA ruling many artists have been looking for new sources of revenue which include diversifying onto other digital platforms, live touring and merchandising.

đ&#x;‘€ Recently launched toy lines and merchandise programs for

YouTube kids content artists include Baby Bus, Baby Shark, Blippi, Cocomelon, Little Baby Bum and Ryan’s World.

đ&#x;‘€ As the negative impact on YouTube ad revenue begins to bite on

the YouTube kids content artists, there will be a very heavy focus on making more revenue from live touring and merchandise sales and if this is not successful then for many artists the cost of producing new YouTube content may outweigh the ad revenue return they receive from YouTube which may see a dramatic slowing down of new kids content being put up on YouTube.

before each kids content video and had also inappropriately been collecting data on the kids audience watching the videos and selling that data to third party companies.



Cost Effective Design Services logos / business cards / corporate brochures / print advertisements digital advertisements / magazine layouts / general design services Bugg Marketing Solutions can produce simple, fast, easy and cost effective design work. Get in touch to start the conversation and find out more about what we can offer...



0407 700 267


The Brand Licensing & Market Specialists As the leading independent Brand Licensing Specialists & Market Intelligence Agency in the business, we pride ourselves on being connected to Brands, Agencies, Retail and emerging trends and we are the go-to organisation to provide you with balanced, researched and up-to-date market intelligence. We are the perfect conduit to the market for small to medium businesses that are not in a position to hire a full-time marketing or licensing manager. Let us seamlessly connect YOU to brands & distribution channels at a fraction of the cost of a full-time employee!



0418 321 837


Profile for thebuggreport

The Bugg Report Magazine - Edition 32  

Welcome to our 2020 Toy Hobby & Licensing Fair Magazine

The Bugg Report Magazine - Edition 32  

Welcome to our 2020 Toy Hobby & Licensing Fair Magazine