*Playmates introduces female ninja turtle
Playmates Toys has introduced 15 new, edgier figures based on the Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation series. Venus de Milo, the first female turtle since the Ninja Turtles first aired in 1988, made her debut as the fifth mutated reptile when the new series premiered on Fox this fall, as well as debuting as one of the new figures by Playmates. A new lineup of villains are also available.
*Galoob seasons holiday lineup with Spice Girls license
Galoob Toys has won the worldwide licensing agreement to produce five fashion dolls based on the successful British pop group Spice Girls. Galoob will rush initial quantities of the dolls into the U.K. market by December in order to capitalize on the Spice Girls frenzy, which includes the release of SpiceWorld, the group’s first motion picture. The dolls will be available in Europe and Canada this year, with wider distribution to the U.S. as soon as sufficient quantities of the dolls can be produced.
*Richie Rich and friends help out Harvey
Since May, when the company regained rights from Universal Studios Consumer Products to control the licensing and merchandising of Harvey characters, The Harvey Entertainment Company has seen profits rise. The company announced last month that its revenues have risen to US$11.8 million in the first nine months of the year from US$7.8 million in the same period the previous year. Net income went from US$1.7 million or 43 cents a share last year to US$2.6 million or 64 cents a share this year.
The company has signed approximately 100 licensees and 20 new licensing agents for its classic characters regained from Universal, which include Casper, The Friendly Ghost, Richie Rich, Wendy The Witch, Baby Huey and Hot Stuff.