Outfit7 & Beanstalk Secure Ten Licensing Partnerships for Global Expansion of Talking Friends Brand
December 13, 2011, New York, NY., – Outfit7 Inc., a subsidiary of Out Fit 7 Ltd and the global mobile entertainment leader behind the blockbuster Talking Friends collection of apps, today announced with Beanstalk, a leading global brand licensing agency and consultancy, ten key licensing partnerships for the Talking Friends characters, which include Talking Tom Cat, Talking Ben the Dog and Talking Gina the Giraffe. The global licensing program will enable the popular animated characters to expand across multiple product categories including apparel and accessories, footwear, sleepwear, home décor, collectibles and plush toys. Additional products will debut in 2012, including back-to-school, social expression, and gift and novelty products.
“Talking Tom and the entire Talking Friends cast of characters’ transcendence beyond app stores to brick-and-mortar retailers is a testament to the Talking Friends brand’s rapidly expanding global fan base and the deep emotional connections with consumers that have been established,” said Paul Baldwin, CMO of Outfit7 Inc., a U.S. subsidiary of Out Fit 7 Ltd. “We are creating not only a global mainstream brand but a global entertainment network. This is the first leap of many for the Talking Friends brand outside the app space.”
The new product line, which will first be available beginning December 13th, through a newly launched e-commerce site, www.talkingfriends.com, will leverage best-in-class licensees assembled by Outfit7. In Spring 2012, the extended line will debut at mass, online and specialty retailers, and will be sold worldwide across North America, Europe and Asia. Featured partners and products secured by Beanstalk include:
- Dragon-I: Animated plush toys that allow consumers to record a sound, which can be played back at different speeds and/or pitches
- Sound N Light: Interactive plush toys with motion and sound technology
- Zagwear: Management of the characters’ e-commerce presence
- C-Life: Apparel
- Berkshire Fashions: Cold weather accessories
- JAT Creative: Gift and novelty items
- Belltex: Bedding and home décor
- Fine Makers: Plush toys, gifts, novelty items and collectibles for the U.K.
- Smith & Brooks: Children’s apparel and sleepwear for the U.K.
- Letao: Footwear in China
“We’ve been overwhelmed with interest from potential licensees and retailers this year, all of whom want to partner with Talking Tom Cat, Talking Ben the Dog and their friends,” said Michael Stone, CEO of Beanstalk. “Global expansion of consumer products such as this is evidence that there is an insatiable appetite for more interaction with these characters. Fans should be excited knowing creative, smart and fun products are on the horizon.”
With over 250 million downloads worldwide, the Talking Friends franchise, has become a sensation with millions of fans of all ages around the world. Each unique, heartwarming and fully animated 3D character comes to life when poked, tickled and played with on mobile touch-screen devices for the iOS and Android platforms. The interactive characters repeat everything a user says, and the apps allow fans to create customized videos of their interactions with the Talking Friends. Outfit7 averages over 20 million downloads per month, with more than 500,000 videos being uploaded monthly to YouTube, Facebook and sent via email and MMS.
In addition, Android asked Outfit 7 to participate in celebrating the 10 billionth app download in Android Market by making both Talking Tom Cat 2 and Talking Ben the Dog available to users for only $0.10 for a day. The promotion ends on December 15, 2011.
When asked for a comment regarding his new global licensing program, Talking Tom Cat giggled, purred and replied, “Next stop, Hollywood!”
With over 70 million monthly active users since its first app launch in July 2010, Outfit7 is one of the world's fastest growing mobile entertainment networks. Its Talking Friends collection has become an entertainment phenomenon with the characters featured on ABC's Modern Family as well as NBC's Today Show. There are eleven characters in the Talking Friends collection including Talking Tom Cat, Talking Ben and Talking Gina the Giraffe. Each of the Talking Friends apps features a unique and fully animated 3D character that comes to life when poked, tickled, and played with on mobile touch-screen devices for the iOS and Android platforms. The interactive characters repeat everything a user says and customized videos of interactions with the characters can be shared via Facebook, YouTube or email. Outfit7 is headquartered in Limassol, Cyprus with subsidiaries in Palo Alto, California and Ljubljana, Slovenia.
Beanstalk, a global brand licensing agency and consultancy, extends brands through the strategic and creative development of licensed products. The company works with blue-chip brands and other high-profile clients to leverage licensing as a strategic tool to enhance brand awareness, increase consumer touch-points, and generate revenue. Beanstalk also offers a breadth of additional licensing services including direct-to-retail program management, license acquisition for manufacturers, celebrity/expert talent management, and TransAct™ customized legal and financial services. The company is headquartered in New York, with offices in London, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Miami, and Hong Kong, and affiliates throughout the world. For more information, please visit www.beanstalk.com. Beanstalk is a part of Omnicom Group Inc. Diversified Agency Services (NYSE: OMC). Omnicom (www.omnicomgroup.com) is a leading global marketing and corporate communications company.