DIC Ent. (DIC) announced that McDonald's Corp. has entered into an agreement naming Cornerstone Group's China Retail Management (CRM) subsidiary the master licensee for McDonald's McKids line across Asia, excluding Japan and India. The multi-million dollar deal is the first major international initiative of DIC's new role as global consumer products and entertainment agent for McDonald's Corp.
CRM will work with DIC and McDonald's to develop the retail consumer product line for Asia, and will design, produce, market and distribute McDonald's McKids product lines that support McDonald's "balanced, active lifestyles" brand strategy.
The deal follows the announcement in June last year that McDonald's had named DIC as Worldwide Licensing Agent for active play toys, entertainment and apparel. DIC is developing comprehensive new programs and products for McDonald's McKids brand and a line of vintage McDonald's apparel to launch in 2006.
"This agreement signifies a substantial step in our relationship with McDonald's as their global consumer products and entertainment brand manager, said Andy Heyward, DIC chairman/ceo. The consumer retail market in Asia continues to flourish, and we anticipate strong interest in the new McKids line of active play toys, videos and apparel, as well as tremendous growth and success in this territory. Our deal with CRM also demonstrates DIC's growing success in expanding its brand management skills beyond its traditional markets, and we expect this area to be an increasingly important part of our business going forward."
"We look forward to the creative energy and innovative thinking that CRM brings to the table," said Jackie Woodward, vp for McDonald's Global Marketing. "This partnership will open up new opportunities to create a fun, active play product line with the quality and value that parents have come to expect from McDonald's."
"McDonald's is one of the most popular and trusted brands in the world with loyal customers throughout Asia," stated Jeff Hsieh, CRM chairman.
CRM also distributes licensed product for Disney, Warner Bros. and exclusively operates Coca-Cola Stores in China.
DIC Ent. (www.dicentertainment.com), a leading children's entertainment company, is a full-service studio dedicated to creating, developing, producing, distributing, marketing and merchandising family-based intellectual properties. DIC has built one of the largest libraries of western-style animation with more than 2,800 half-hours of programming. As a pre-eminent supplier of kid's programming worldwide, DIC has developed strategic partnerships with key domestic and international broadcast partners throughout North America, Europe, Asia, Latin America, Africa and Australia. DIC is headquartered in Burbank, California, with international offices in Paris, London and Cologne.
McDonald's is the leading foodservice retailer with more than 30,000 local restaurants serving nearly 50 million people in more than 100 countries each day. Approximately 70% of McDonald's restaurants worldwide are owned and operated by independent, local businessmen and women.
The Cornerstone, group through its subsidiary China retail management Ltd. (CRM), has been distributing toys in China under the Beiliwei (Playwell) banner since the early 1990s. CRM operates more than 500 retail outlets and 11 distribution centers strategically located in China. This network of outlets represents one of the most complete penetrations of the Chinese consumer products market. CRM manages Disney Corners and distributes Disney licensed products, as well as other well-known toy branded products such as Wild Planet, Sassy, Radical Games, Warner Bros. licensed properties. CRM also exclusively operates Coca-Cola Stores in China.