EPIC NEW LINE OF INNOVATIVE TOYS FROM ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAMER KISS IN THE WORKS TO ROCK RETAIL IN 2015
Epic Rights Signs Deals with Bif Bang Pow!, Figures Toy Company and K’Nex Brands To Bring KISS Collectibles and Licensed Products to Fans
West Hollywood, CA, July 14, 2014 – Following Licensing Expo 2014, Epic Rights, the full service, global branding, merchandising and rights management company representing the merchandising, licensing, e-commerce and digital media interests of legendary rock band KISS, has secured its first raft of licensing agreements for the development of all new toy lines for the iconic brand. The announcement was made today by Juli Boylan-Riddles, Executive Vice President, Global Strategic Partnerships & Licensing, Epic Rights.
“There continues to be an incredible demand for anything KISS, as evidenced by the quality and quantity of licensing partners that the band and the brand attract and we look forward to working with Bif Bang Pow!, Figures Toy and K’Nex to bring all new product to consumers,” said Boylan-Riddles in announcing the latest round of licensing partners for the timeless and eternally popular band. “KISS’ loyal, passionate fans are a marketing fantasy come true, introducing younger generations to the indelible music and celebrated antics of one of the most popular bands of all time, continuing to grow the KISS consumer base and fuel demand for all things KISS.”
Among the companies developing innovative toy lines around the fabled band’s brand are:
· Bif Bang Pow!, the world-renowned manufacturer of licensed consumer products, will create the first-ever 3 3/4 inch scale KISS action figures. Bif Bang Pow! will also produce KISS stationery products, tin totes, drinkware, license plate frames, nesting dolls and other products as part of its special KISS collectibles line. Slated for release in early 2015, Bif Bang Pow!’s 3¾” scale KISS action figures and collectibles will be distributed exclusively through EE Distribution, a division of Entertainment Earth, Inc. and sold directly to consumers via its website, www.entertainmentearth.com, and other fine specialty retailers.
· Figures Toy Company, specializing in action figures for the collectibles market, is introducing KISS action figures reminiscent of the classic figures first released in 1977-78 by the Mego Toy Company. The figures, each with rooted hair, cloth clothing and 16 points of articulation, will be available in 18-inch, re-released in 12-inch models and, for the first time, will be available in 8-inch figures, too. The Figures Toy Company KISS figures will be distributed through Toys”R”Us, Entertainment Earth, KISS Museum, KISS Army Warehouse, Comic Book & Hobby Stores and Big Bad Toy with a suggested retail price of $24.99 for the 8-inch figures, which should be on shelves in 1Q 2015, and $59.99 for the 12-inch figures.
· K’NEX Brands, the world’s most innovative construction toy company, has developed KISS buildable figures that provide consumers with the ability to build their own Demon, Starchild, Spaceman and Catman, including costumes, musical instruments and a stage to display the completed KISS band members. K’NEX has also produced a KISS Rock Stage Big Rig Building Set which provides consumers with everything they’ll need to take their KISS figures on tour, including two roadie figures and more than 300 pieces to create the ultimate KISS concert stage. The K’NEX KISS licensed products are currently available through www.knex.com and various independent toy retailers.
"As a huge KISS fan since my early childhood in the 70s, I'm super-excited to work with this legendary band to create a variety of awesome new collectibles,” says Jason Labowitz, President of Bif Bang Pow! “While we may have been given the opportunity to buy some great KISS products over the years, the Holy Grail of toys for collectors, 3¾” action figures, were missing - until now. It's an honor to work on a fan-centric line plan for the action figures, as well as a complimentary set of new collectible merchandise."
“We never understood why 8 inch KISS action figures were not produced back in the 1970's when The Mego Toy Company had already released the 12 inch versions,” says Figures Toy Company CFO Anthony Balasco. “Our first release will have the retro look from the 1970's, but future releases will cover all time periods in KISS' remarkable 40plus year musical career."
“K’NEX is known for both its innovation and for inspiring creativity in kids around the world,” said Michael Araten, President and CEO of K’NEX and The Rodon Group®. “We are very excited to be introducing the next generation of KISS fans to the wonder and excitement of building their own rock band and the magical environment of the KISS concert stage. It’s an excellent representation of what loyal KISS fans and our steadfast builders expect and new consumers want—amazing value, interactivity, and building fun!”
KISS remains one of the most influential bands in the history of rock and roll. As one of America's top gold-record champions, KISS has released 44 albums and sold more than 100 million albums worldwide. Decades of record-breaking tours around the globe have included high-profile appearances at Super Bowl XXXIII, the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, the Rockin' The Corps concert dedicated to our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, special guest appearance on the 2009 American Idol finale that boasted 30 million viewers and a 2010 Dr. Pepper Super Bowl commercial and advertising campaign in support of their Hottest Show On Earth tour. KISS is currently featured in major advertising and marketing campaigns for John Varvatos and Google Play. This April KISS launches their inaugural Arena Football League Season with the LA KISS Football team, bringing professional football back to Los Angeles. This summer AMC will begin airing a new reality series in prime time about the LA KISS first season. The KISS legacy continues to grow, generation after generation. The unparalleled devotion and loyalty of the KISS Army to the "Hottest Band in the World" is a striking testament to the band's unbreakable bond with its fans. This year KISS will be celebrating two major milestones, their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as well as the band's 40th Anniversary. For more information: www.KissOnline.com
About Epic Rights:
Epic Rights is a full service global branding, licensing and rights management company dedicated to building celebrities and entertainment brands via its broad global network of retailers, licensees and agents. Working with a roster of top clients and brands, Epic Rights’ services includes licensing/branding, music merchandising, social media management, VIP ticketing and fan clubs. Epic Rights also oversees sponsorships and endorsements, digital archiving of all creative/photos/media assets and manages worldwide e-commerce for its clients in addition to providing in-house legal resources for trademark registration and audit management. Epic Rights is headquartered in Los Angeles, California. For more information, visit: www.epicrights.com.
About Bif Bang Pow!
Bif Bang Pow!™ (bifbangpow.com) produces first-rate collectibles for such popular properties as Star Trek™, Dexter®, The Big Bang Theory™, Saturday Night Live™, The Awesomes™, Mike Tyson Mysteries™, Adventure Time™, Regular Show™, Penny Dreadful™, The Venture Bros.™, The Six Million Dollar Man™, Flash Gordon™, KISS™, Battlestar Galactica™, NCIS™, and The Twilight Zone™. Founder Jason Lenzi is a seasoned television producer and the ultimate fan of cultish pop culture. So when he created his company in 2005, he took the fan's perspective. His idea was to bring items to the marketplace that he himself would want to own. Cultivated from TV, movies, books, comics, music, and more, Bif Bang Pow!'s mission is to provide high-quality action figures, toys, and collectibles to the massive cult audience (and kids of all ages) that wishes these toys were already in their collection.
About Figures Toy Company
Figures Toy Company was started back in 1989 by Anthony Balasco who sold collectible toys through print catalogs, print ads and direct selling at collectible toy shows. In 1998, Anthony partnered with Steve Sandberg and obtained the licensees to manufacture Replica Wrestling Belts. Figures Toy Company now manufactures WWE, WCW, ECW Replica Wrestling Belts, 8 inch Retro Type action figures and continues to work on product directly aimed at the collectible consumer. Please visit www.figurestoycompany.com for more details.
About K’NEX Brands
Founded in 1992, K’NEX Brands, the world’s most innovative construction toy company, was established to make and sell what has become one of the world’s leading integrated construction systems for children, and is America’s STEM building solution. Winner of over 250 international awards and recognitions, K’NEX, America’s Building Toy® company, is focused on Building Worlds Kids Love® and encourages youngsters to “imagine, build and play.” From the living room to the classroom, K’NEX has building toys specially designed for every age group and skill level. The K’NEX family of brands includes K’NEX Building Sets, K’NEX Thrill Rides, K’NEX Education®, Lincoln Logs®, Tinkertoy®, NASCAR®, Angry Birds™, Mario Kart Wii™, Mario Kart 7™, Super Mario™, PacMan™, Titanfall™, Family Guy™, Plants vs. Zombies™, and more. Since 1992, The Rodon Group®, a subsidiary of K'NEX Brands, L.P., has manufactured over 31 billion parts for the K'NEX building toy system. Join us as we help build the leaders of tomorrow. For more information, please visit www.knex.com or www.rodongroup.com.