Press Release from HIT Entertainment
New York, NY — March 10, 2011 — It’s a pillow, it’s a pet, it’s a Thomas the Tank Engine Pillow Pet! Children and fans of Thomas & Friends, the number one preschool property in the United States, will soon be able to snuggle up with the series’ beloved star, Thomas the Tank Engine. HIT Entertainment, a leading provider of quality children’s entertainment, has signed a licensing deal with Ontel Products Corporation and CJ Products, LLC to create Thomas the Tank Engine-inspired Pillow Pets, which will provide kids with a cuddly companion along with the functionality of a full-size pillow. Thomas & Friends is the first licensed property that Ontel Products Corporation and CJ Products, LLC has taken on for Pillow Pets.
The Thomas & Friends Pillow Pets will be available in 2011 at mass and specialty retail channels in the U.S. and Canada. With a strap that closes underneath to transform Thomas from his engine form to a pillow made of ultra-soft chenille, the Thomas & Friends Pillow Pets will be an ideal travel pal, naptime buddy, and all-around snuggly friend.
“Since emerging in the marketplace, Pillow Pets have been immensely popular with kids of all ages, and pairing this unique product with Thomas & Friends, the #1 preschool license, is a natural fit,” said Gabriela Arenas, Vice President, US Consumer Products, Thomas Division, HIT Entertainment. “Children and families have long adored Thomas & Friends on screen, in books, through toys, and beyond. Now, little engineers can play with their Thomas-inspired Pillow Pets during the day and take him along to sleep at night with this fun new product.”
Chuck Khubani at Ontel Products and Jennifer Telfer at CJ Products said, “We’re thrilled to team with one of the most celebrated preschool characters of our time for our popular Pillow Pets products. We are excited about getting Thomas & Friends Pillow Pets into the hands of fans worldwide.”
Thomas & Friends remains as popular as ever. For the 10th consecutive year, Thomas & Friends was the number one license in the preschool toys category in the United States, according to The NPD Group, Inc. Thomas & Friends also holds the #1 spot for top preschool property and it was a top 10 property in the entire toy industry for 2010, according to NPD.
About Pillow PetsSince 2003, Pillow Pets have been bringing smiles to faces of all ages. The concept for the snuggly companions was the brainchild of a San Diego-based mother of two, who had grown tired of picking up stuffed animals strewn across her children’s rooms. What began with the simple goal of transforming a simple stuffed animal into a functional item for children has grown into an amazing jungle of popular retail and wholesale products. For more information, please visit www.GetPillowPets.com.
About HIT EntertainmentHIT Entertainment is one of the world's leading independent children's entertainment producers and rights-owners. HIT's portfolio includes properties, such as Barney, Bob the Builder, Thomas & Friends, Pingu, Fireman Sam, Angelina Ballerina and Rainbow Magic. HIT represents Chapman Entertainment’s Fifi and the Flowertots and Roary the Racing Car in North America. HIT also acts as representative for The Wiggles in the UK. Launched in 1989, HIT’s lines of business span television and video production, content distribution, publishing, consumer products licensing and live events and has operations in the UK, US, Canada, Hong Kong and Japan. HIT is a part-owner of US-based preschool channel, PBS KIDS SproutSM. For more information, visit www.hitentertainment.com.