Kids channel POGO & #BANNER1 & # has finally ventured into merchandising in a big way, following big brother Cartoon Network's footsteps. After launching Powerpuff Girls, Dexter and Johnny Bravo consumer products last year under the Cartoon Network banner, Cartoon Network Enterprises (CNE) has decided it's time for POGO to be a player in the merchandising market, too.
POGO has forayed into the branded consumer products arena with a toy range called POGO Wheels, which contains a set of eight products under it. Cartoon Network Enterprises hopes that this range will be a success like the Beyblade one launched last year. The products will be available across 38 cities and 450 outlets in India, including Lifestyle, Shoppers' Stop, Pantaloon, Piramyd, Landmark, Hypercity and Crossword.
At present, there are in-channel promos running on air, apart from the various VJs on its show promoting the range.
In addition, places frequented by kids such as Lifestyle and Landmark City will be leveraged. Racing arenas here will be used to set up screens with promos of the product running on them, along with on-ground contests where the POGO Wheels range will be gifted as a prize to winners.
Apart from POGO Wheels, Cartoon Network Enterprises will be launching two theme parks in Delhi next year. The POGO theme park, called 'Planet POGO', will be launched in summer, whereas the Cartoon Network one ('Cartoon Network Townsville') will commence by the end of 2007.
Also, POGO will soon delve into branded stationery, apparels, innerwear, gifts and novelties, bags and activity games.
Asked if POGO was not a late entrant in this segment, Jiggy George, director, Cartoon Network Enterprises, India and South Asia, says it's not too late. "One needs two essentials to get into merchandising - equity and retail presence. While we have the former, retail was hardly as organised as it is now. And it's only the beginning, with big giants eyeing the retail pie. Therefore, it is the perfect timing for us."
He adds that POGO as a brand persuades kids to think bigger and dream bigger. "With the launch of POGO Wheels, we have taken a step towards offering a product that gives kids an opportunity to compete with each other and explore the joys of winning," George adds.
Created by Jakks Pacific Inc, a consumer products and toy company in the US, POGO Wheels are exact replicas of real vehicles on wheels and skates, though on a smaller scale, to experience real racing action. The range will be priced between Rs 399 (Basic Launcher) to Rs 1129 (Turbo Launcher), and will be manufactured and distributed by Cybershop Marketing.
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