Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom, Entertainment One Licensing’s (eOne) Emmy and BAFTA award-winning preschool series created and produced by Astley Baker Davies, is gathering momentum across Spain and Italy. Following a robust international expansion, the licensor unveils key developments for its popular preschool property across both regions.
In Spain the brand has firmly established itself in the preschool market with regular broadcasts on Nick Jr. and RTVE’s Clan, with Clan reporting the series to be one of its most top rated preschool shows in the region throughout Q4 2014. Merchandise kicked off at the end of 2013 and there are now 20 licensees on board with key categories filled including publishing (Random House and Santillana) which is leading the sales ranks in preschool books, apparel (United Labels), musical toys (Claudio Reig), role-play and construction sets (Simba) and inclusion in Bauer’s Clan magazine which also saw its December 2014 issue sell over 80,000 copies.
Master toy partner Bizak continues to distribute toys across all leading retailers, with its hero items topping the preschool product charts, based on sales value in Spain. Creativos Educativos Proyectos’s Ben and Holly experiential events were a major success with families during Christmas 2014. The events saw fans participate in a variety of family friendly activities and engage with the official costume characters in special ‘meet and greets’ in shopping centres up and down the country.
A groundswell of affection has been building for the brand in Italy where series two is currently airing daily on Rai Yo Yo. Publishing partner Giunti recently signed on for a line of books which have since charted in the top 20 Hit List for children’s books in Italy. The publisher also held Ben and Holly parties at its stand at the annual comic book and gaming convention, Lucca Comics late last year where the official costume characters made several appearances. Since launching for Christmas 2014, Giochi Preziosi’s popular toy line was an instant hit with fans, selling out across Toys Center and Giocheria stores. Easter 2015 will also see the expansion of the food and drink category as Preziosi Food launches products including Easter Eggs and confectionary in the Italian market.
Andrew Carley, Head of Global Licensing at Entertainment One says, “The ratings and consumer engagement for Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom are incredibly strong across both regions, so it’s vital that we continue to introduce products and initiatives into these markets to meet the ongoing demand. We are taking a long-term approach to the international strategy and want to ensure that the partners we work with capture the magical and charming qualities of the brand that are making it a firm favourite with families across the world.”