For the first time in its 15-year history, Malibu, California’s Jakks Pacific is developing a licensing program based on one of its proprietary IPs. It’s tapped L.A.-based The Name Game, headed up by Holly Rawlinson, to act as the licensing agent and extend toy line Girl Gourmet into the consumer products realm.
The bestselling Girl Gourmet line launched with the GG Cupcake Maker two years ago, and Jakks has since been steadily expanding the product range that targets girls ages six and up. As the range continues to generate good revenue in a less-than-stellar economy, Jakks decided it was time to see where it could take the brand.
‘We really believe in this one as a company,’ says Jennifer Richmond, SVP of licensing and media at Jakks Pacific. ‘We think the interactivity of the brand and the lifestyle aspects that are associated with it make it a good fit for outbound licensing.’
The Name Game president Rawlinson is pairing up with Sharon Bennett of Bennett Branding to execute the program, which will be built around the inherent interactivity of Girl Gourmet. ‘The brand is all about creative self-expression,’ says Rawlinson. ‘The toys give girls the tools to allow them to express themselves, so we will follow that lead.’
The Name Game is taking a two-pronged approach for the mass-targeted program – the brand’s creative streak will fuel publishing and video game products, while the Girl Gourmet lifestyle should spawn apparel, accessories and health & beauty items.
Both Rawlinson and Richmond say they’re looking to ink deals in the coming weeks, with the first wave of products expected to be ready for a soft retail launch at year’s end. Rawlinson’s hoping to lead with an apparel partner, followed by kids cosmetics, bedding and social expressions licensees. GR