Warner Bros. Consumer Products EMEA looks to cash in on World Cup fever to drive its profile

As football fever spreads around the globe, Warner Bros. Consumer Products EMEA (WBCP EMEA) has unveiled the details of how it is working with some of the best-in-class licensing partners and retailers to develop consumer products that celebrate the synergy between its iconic entertainment brands, including Looney Tunes, and DC Comics’ Superman and Batman, and major sporting events whilst engendering a sense of national pride. Warner Bros. Consumer Products EMEA EVP & GM Pilar Zulueta states in a release: “As a licensor and the custodian of some the most iconic entertainment brands in history, we work hard to consciously develop narratives for our properties that relate to current market trends and maintain the brands relevance amongst the broadest range of consumers. Sport is a bone fide form of entertainment, and iconic characters such as Superman, Batman and Looney Tunes have the profile and gravitas to drive home the ‘get active’ message.  Together, our brands and sports are a very powerful combination.” WBCP EMEA’s sporting strategy is manifesting itself in a number of interesting deals with some of Europe’s best-in-class retailers. Zara has launched a range of Superman t-shirts for boys that are emblazoned with the iconic S-Shield and customised with a choice of country flag artwork.  This enables fans to visibly show their support for their home nation whilst also leveraging the positive qualities associated with the DC Comics Super Heroes that are equally applicable to sports including strength, courage, a commitment to high performance, resilience and sheer determination. The collection launched for spring/summer 2014 and is currently available in 1700 Zara stores across Europe.  Carrefour Spain is also on-board and has launched a range of Batman t-shirts is the national colours of red and yellow adorned with the Batman emblem and the words ‘Espańa’ and ‘the team’ which are now available in 172 hypermarkets across the country. Zulueta continues, “Leveraging our properties against major sporting events is very much part of our long term brand development strategy.  By capitalising upon the synergy between sports and our iconic licensed entertainment properties, we increase the relevance of our brands beyond the core fan base – the commercial potential is immense.” The Looney Tunes, through the development of the Looney Tunes Active brand extension, has a strong association with sport that stretches back seven years.  By leveraging the naturally active qualities of the Looney Tunes characters, WBCP EMEA has successfully developed Europe’s most successful licensed food and drink programme and a vehicle with a proven ability to drive home the benefits of living an active lifestyle to children and families. The programme continues to attract high profile partners with El Corte Inglés, the latest retailer to join the fold.  The Spanish retail giant has created a range of men’s t-shirts depicting the Looney Tunes characters playing football with animated graphics combined with the country names of teams that have qualified for next month’s tournament, all in relevant team colours.  The products perfectly combine the carnival spirit typically associated with the football tournament whilst giving fans the chance to literally wear and publically convey their support and pride for their country. WBCP EMEA dedication to supporting the development of Looney Tunes Active continues through the release of new artwork programmes. The brand new style guide, Looney Tunes: Football is Fun will be available to partners this summer and will provide inspiration for partners looking to create products to capitalise upon future tournaments, national league championships and boys’ universal love of football.
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