UK-based animation studio Aardman has appointed Sinco as master toy licensee for the UK and Eire. The toymaker’s first master toy partnership covers Aardman’s Shaun the Sheep and Timmy Time properties. Certain international manufacturing rights are also included in the deal.
As master toy licensee in the territory, Sinco will produce plush, figurines, playsets, vehicles, games and puzzles, as well as arts & crafts products. The initial range will be unveiled at Hong Kong Toy Show in January with the first products hitting shelves in fall 2018.
Additionally, the deal will see Sinco develop a toy collection to coincide with the theatrical release of Shaun the Sheep Movie 2 in 2019. These products will sit alongside classic Shaun the Sheep items, and the entire range will be supported by a marketing program that includes TV advertising.
Pre-production on the sequel began in January, and the film will be directed by Richard Starzak (Shaun the Sheep Movie, Creature Comforts) and produced by Paul Kewley (Shaun the Sheep Movie, The Farmer’s Llamas). The first film, directed by Mark Burton and Richard Starzak, grossed US$106 million at the box office globally.
Last year, Aardman tapped Start Licensing to represent its key brands in the UK. The independent licensing agency manages the UK-based consumer products programs for Shaun the Sheep, Wallace & Gromit, Morph and Timmy Time. In addition to taking on management of Aardman’s existing licensing programs, Start Licensing is also tasked with generating new business for the studio. Aardman maintains responsibility for master toy, publishing and interactive categories under the agreement, and all product approvals, payments and contracts continue to be managed directly by the Aardman team.