Nickelodeon & Viacom Consumer Products and JAKKS Pacific, Inc. (NASDAQ:JAKK) announced today at the American International Fall Toy Show in Dallas that they have executed a domestic-based master toy licensing agreement to create toys and related products based on the hit Nickelodeon animated series SpongeBob SquarePants. Launched in July 1999, SpongeBob SquarePants has emerged as a pop-culture phenomenon and one of the most popular series in kids' television history. For the last six years, the show has been the number-one animated program with kids 2-11. Approximately 64.5 million viewers tune into the show each month including a massive base of adult fans (Source: Nielsen Cume Data - July 2007.) At retail, SpongeBob SquarePants is a consumer favorite, achieving over $6.3 billion in retail sales to-date.
"As we prepare to celebrate the 10th anniversary of everyone's favorite animated character, SpongeBob SquarePants, JAKKS is the perfect partner to bring new innovation to our toys," said Leigh Anne Brodsky, President, Nickelodeon & Viacom Consumer Products. "JAKKS has been developing creative product lines for Nickelodeon for many years and we're excited to add SpongeBob-- a multi billion dollar brand and a consumer favorite to JAKKS' Nickelodeon portfolio. We look forward to continuing SpongeBob's growth as a top toy brand."
JAKKS Pacific(TM) plans to launch the line with a collectible micro figure program, and plush products based on SpongeBob SquarePants and the beloved cast of characters from the television series. The agreement also covers playsets, preschool toys, youth electronics, water toys, novelty items and more. JAKKS' new SpongeBob SquarePants product line is expected to launch in 2008.
"We are excited to add one of the world's most iconic characters, SpongeBob Squarepants, to our portfolio," said Stephen Berman, President and COO, of JAKKS Pacific, Inc. "JAKKS(TM) has extensive experience in the plush and collectible figures arena, and we know that SpongeBob is the ultimate property to launch a major program around . For the first time ever, SpongeBob SquarePants collectible plush and figures will be available at retail nationwide!"