afaqs! news bureau

What young girls can be: Ms Inventor has the answer

The new character is the 36th Little Miss to join the iconic children’s franchise and the new book, which launches today (International Women’s Day), is aimed at encouraging young girls to pursue science.

The brand owner of the Little Miss and Mr Men series, Sanrio, believes that the new book is the answer to reach children in new and different ways.

Sanrio is also looking at ways to expand the Mr Men and Little Miss universe. The company is exploring digital options for the brand, while a film is also under consideration.

According to Simon Gresswell, chief operating officer, Sanrio, it is all about diversity too. “To think about both sexes, to think about gender neutrality, [to think about] how the characters can be used in a positive way rather than purely commercial way has become really important,” he told Marketing Week.

It has also run a month-long competition asking children to design a new tool to protect Mr Bump. The competition received nearly 850 entries. Sanrio will be announcing the winner at the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry on 24 March. The child who wins will have their invention immortalised in a book drawn by Adam Hargraves, son of the original writer and illustrator Roger Hargreaves.

Sanrio is also expanding the brand through commercial partnerships with brands like McDonald’s.