Looking to diversify its Marvel Juniors product lines by opening up to a new target demo, Marvel Entertainment has expanded the lifestyle brand to include a distinctly feminine adjunct range that just launched at retail in the US.
Zeroing in on the fashion-forward female, president of North American consumer products Paul Gitter says the new extension focuses on softlines; T-shirts are its primary category, but the range also touches on accessories and cosmetics. On the hardlines side of the equation, Gitter is looking at collectibles including statues, dioramas and prop replicas.
Interestingly, because Marvel’s female superheroes target male consumers, Gitter has concentrated instead on the iconic look of the overall brand in his design direction. ‘We’re using very catchy icons and one-liners,’ he says. ‘And we’re focusing on a couple of different executions centered around romance, lifestyle, tattoo/doodle art and a more classic approach.’
Targeting girls, tweens, juniors and women in all retail channels, the extension sees Marvel’s portfolio of superheroes and supervillains get a glam, vintage makeover on product. Key categories include fashion tops, sportswear and denim, outerwear, loungewear and intimates, swimwear, footwear, hats, bags, accessories, jewelry, personal care and stationery.
Partners already on-board include Junk Food (fashion tops, available at The Gap, department and specialty stores), Mighty Fine (fashion tops, available at mid-tier, department and specialty stores), Fortune Fashions (mass-market fashion tops), Freeze (fashion tops, mass and mid-tier), Biodome (hats, bags and small leather goods), H.E.R. Accessories (jewelry), JAKKS Pacific/Disguise (costumes), Lotta Luv (cosmetics, bags), and iScream/Mines Press (journals, notebooks and paper products).
The Marvel Juniors program rolled out in 2007, with 2008 being its first full year at retail, and Gitter says it’s achieved triple-digit growth year over year. He’s looking to turn the whole package – extension and all – into a worldwide initiative.