1. STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE
DIC acquired the brand in 2003, and it has since become the company’s most lucrative asset. Worldwide retail revenues have reached $1.5 billion in the last three years, with nearly 400 different licensing deals in place and products ranging from dolls to perfumes to medical supplies to apparel (which itself ranges from the Strawberry Shortcake Baby line to some decidedly adult undergarments). Feature film “Sweet Dreams” is set to bow later this year; also upcoming are five new DVD releases and the rollout of a Shortcake-themed Dance Dance Revolution game.
DIC DVDs: “Meet Strawberry Shortcake,” “Adventures on Ice Cream Island,” “Seaberry Beach Party,” “Spring for Strawberry Shortcake,” “Berry Merry Christmas,” “Best Pets Yet,” “Dress Up Days,” “Get Well Adventure,” “Play Day Surprise,” “Moonlight Mysteries,” “World of Friends”
Revenue sources: Toys, apparel, paper products, books, magazines, bedding, dinnerware, furniture, luggage, DVDs, videogames, candy, cosmetics, toiletries, cake mix, party supplies, sewing kits, first-aid supplies, jewelry, bicycles, tricycles, CDs, school supplies, garden tools, art supplies, electronics, musical instruments, cleaning products, by-the-yard fabric
Licensees: JAKKS Pacific, Sambro, Mattel, McDonald’s, Playmates, Children’s Apparel Network, Koch, Penguin Putnam, K.E. Media, Carlton Cards, Fruit of the Loom, American Greetings, Fisher Price, Band-Aid, Scholastic Inc. and many more
Upon securing rights to the iconic Danish toy, DIC split the brand in two: Classic Trolls continues with the original toy designs and slight variants thereof; Trollz reps a contempo tween brand, breaking into syndication this fall, with its own merchandise and direct-to-DVD toons.
Revenue sources: toys, paper products, apparel
Licensees: Play Along, American Greetings, Trevco 3. McDONALD’S
Since becoming worldwide licensing agent for the fast-food leviathan in 2005, DIC has not only undertaken Happy Meal duties, but also was integral in launching the McKids apparel and activity line, which has since expanded to multiple territories, including China.
Revenue sources: apparel, toys
Licensees: Mattel, Mighty Fine, Sport Fun, Cornerstone Group China Retail Management 4. MADELINE
The oldest character in DIC’s coffer of collected properties, Madeline’s licensed products are primarily high-end collectibles. There are plans to expand into home furnishings and domestic products in 2007.
Revenue sources: DVDs, dolls
Licensee: Alexander Doll Co. 5. INSPECTOR GADGET
DIC’s first original syndicated series, Inspector Gadget keeps the shekels stacking up on the strength of DVD and vidgame sales.
Revenue sources: DVDs, videogames
Licensee: Ubisoft 6. SABRINA
Animated spinoff of ABC sitcom “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” Sabrina is one of DIC’s most popular DVD properties and will be revived on “Secret Slumber Party” this fall.
Revenue sources: DVDs, videogames
Licensees: none 7. HORSELAND
Adapted from eponymous online horse-breeding sim, DIC uses the brand’s established popularity and Web presence to propagate product awareness.
Revenue sources: Toys, apparel
Licensees: Thinkway Intl., Jerry Leigh of California, DecoPac 8. SLUMBER PARTY GIRLS
Appearing in interstitials scattered throughout the three hours of CBS’ “KOL Secret Slumber Party” and on “Dance Revolution!,” the tween girl-group will soon release a CD on Geffen Records. Other licensees are in negotiation.
Revenue sources: CDs
Licensees: pending 9. CAKE
Despite the tagline “You can’t buy individuality, but you can make it,” live-action arts & crafts skein will soon have its own retail line available to buyers. Focus of merchandising, however, will be on DIY customization.
Revenue sources: apparel, home decor, art supplies (projected)
Licensees: pending 10. DANCE REVOLUTION!
Hoofer gameshow adapted from the videogame “Dance Revolution!” benefits from a built-in synergy with game’s manufacturer, Konami — one that DIC looks to exploit further with a tie-in to its Strawberry Shortcake franchise.
Revenue sources: videogames