CES Notes: A Monster Move, Fashion Brands, Mascots Revamped

From fashion brands woven into electronics gear and time-honored labels revived for gaming and notebook PCs to companies adopting new designs for their mascots and strategies for their products, there were ample changes being made in licensing at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.


Monster Products Adopts Licensing Strategy

Monster Products, long known for developing, designing and sourcing its own high-end speakers, cables and accessories, furniture and other IL01122CESstoryMonsterCableproducts, is now licensing those categories Xtreme Cables/Jem Accessories will launch a full line of Monster HDMI cables, surge protectors, automotive accessories and other products starting this summer. The broad rollout of products follows a six-month exclusive Xtreme had at Walmart for Monster branded products (LED strips, automotive accessories had had last at Walmart, says Xtreme’s Elie Chemtob. Xtreme will position the Monster brand at a premium to its own Xtreme brand cables, surge protectors and other products, which are typically opening price point items, says Chemtob. Monster’s change in strategy follows several years of mounting losses and declining sales after the 2014 sale of Beats Electronics to Apple; Monster had designed and distributed. Beats headphones, speakers and other products, but Apple took that over.


Mascots Getting New Look

To meet a younger audience and the digital age, brand mascots Nipper and Chipper (for the RCA brand) and the Energizer Bunny are getting a make-over. The Energizer Bunny is being recast in an animated version and prepped for licensing, says Linda Morgenstern of Beanstalk, which handles licensing for Energizer. Licensee Funko is developing an Energizer vinyl figure and Beanstalk will seek agreements in apparel and other categories. The remake of the Energizer Bunny is part of redesigned packaging – the first makeover in a decade — for products to be rolled out this year. Nipper and Chipper also were redone for animation and the RCA logo has been redesigned to mark the brand’s 100th anniversary this year, says Claire Villeneuve of Technicolor, which owns the brand and is positioning the mascots for licensing in plush, t-shirts, bags and other products.


Fashion Brands Taking on New Style in Electronics

The fashion world gained some visibility at CES, with the brands of Hearst’s Elle and designer Isaac Mizrahi applied to electronic accessory ranges.

IMG_0038Sakar is readying Elle “Classy Chic” Bluetooth headphones and “All About the Ears” earbuds; beads that double as a cellphone charger cable; and a lipstick case and mirror that can serve as power banks. The Elle products are priced at a slight premium to similar products under Sakar’s own brands.

MiWorld’s Isaac Mizrahi line includes cellphone covers, headphones, ear buds and charger cables and will be targeted to department stores where Mizrahi apparel is sold, says MiWorld’s Judah Uziel. “If you look at Michael Kors, Coach and Fendi” all of which have higher priced electronics accessories, “smartphones and other items are part of everyone’s life and viewed as a fashion extension of the consumer,” says Uziel. MiWorld also fields Bebe headphones and cellphone cases.


What’s in a Name?

Technicolor and Curtis International were at odds over Technicolor’s display of the Thomson brand (marketed mostly outside the U.S. — at its booth. Curtis, which is a licensee for Technicolor’s RCA (TVs and appliances) and Proscan (TV and audio) brands, had also applied the Thomson label to a refrigerator and ice chest displayed at its booth and showed a Thomson sign alongside those for its other licensed brands. The only problem is, says Technicolor’s Claire Villeneuve, Curtis doesn’t yet have a license for the Thomson brand. A Curtis spokesman said product plans haven’t been set and declined further comment.

source: https://www.licensing.org/inside-licensing/ces-notes-a-monster-move-fashion-brands-mascots-revamped/

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LIMA to Induct Michael Stone and Pam Lifford into Licensing Hall of Fame

The International Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association (LIMA) today announced that Michael Stone, Chairman and Co-founder of Beanstalk, and Pam Lifford, President of Warner Bros. Global Brands & Experiences, are the 2019 inductees to the LIMA Licensing Hall of Fame. This year’s Hall of Fame Induction will take place on June 4, at the LIMA Licensing Awards Ceremony during Licensing Expo 2019 in Las Vegas.

“LIMA is proud to celebrate these two widely respected licensing veterans who have dedicated their careers to driving the success of licensing among the broader business community,” said LIMA President, Maura Regan. “Michael has been instrumental in the evolution of brand extension licensing as a highly effective corporate strategy and Pam is responsible for the domestic and international licensing of some of the most highly regarded entertainment franchises in the world. Their recognition in the Licensing Hall of Fame is well-deserved.”

Headshot ColorMichael Stone

Michael Stone is the chairman and co-founder of Beanstalk, an Omnicom-owned, global brand extension licensing agency and consultancy. Beanstalk is the recipient of 23 LIMA Awards and is responsible for some of the most successful licensing programs of all time, including programs for Procter & Gamble, Stanley Black & Decker, Harley-Davidson, The Coca-Cola Company, HGTV, Diageo, and Mary-Kate and Ashley, among others. In addition to teaching the first graduate course in the country specifically on trademark licensing as an adjunct professor for Baruch University, as well as an undergraduate course at Long Island University Post, Stone is an authority on licensing and frequently contributes to Advertising Age, Adweek, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and other media outlets. Michael has recently authored his first book “The Power of Licensing: Harnessing Brand Equity”.

Untitled design (1) copyPam Lifford

Pam Lifford is president of Warner Bros. Global Brands & Experiences where she leads the alignment of large-scale brand and franchise strategies across the studio’s world-class characters and brands as well as overseeing Warner Bros. Consumer Products, DC, Themed Entertainment and a new Global Franchise team. Lifford’s vision for next-level development of fan-engagement drives the creation of business opportunities designed to reshape how Warner Bros. delivers fan-focused activities. Working in partnership with all divisions of the Studio, Lifford’s team ensures that every touchpoint for cross-company collaboration is maximized. Lifford joined Warner Bros. in 2016 as president of its Consumer Products division where she refocused the Division’s priorities and put strategies in place that increased the business by 47 percent in her first year alone. Prior to Warner Bros., Lifford held an executive leadership position at Disney and Quicksilver, Inc. as well as key roles at Road Runner Sports and Nike.