The Pokémon Company Invests in Wicked Cool Toys
posted on by Jennifer Sherman
The Pokémon Company International, which manages the Pokémon franchise outside Asia, has made a strategic investment in Wicked Cool Toys. Additionally, The Pokémon Company International has taken a seat on the company's board of directors and awarded it its master toy license worldwide outside of Asia.
Wicked Cool Toys will produce action figures, play sets, plush, roleplay items, and other toys based on the anime. The first merchandise will ship in fall 2018. The Pennsylvania-based company, which was founded in 2012, focuses on licensed toys.
The Pokémon Company said in the announcement, “The investment in Wicked Cool Toys is in line with the strategic partnership approach The Pokemon Company International engaged in with Niantic Inc., the developers and publishers of Pokémon GO." The company's president president Tsunekazu Ishihara said in January that The Pokémon Company and Nintendo are looking into developing a device that will allow the Pokémon Go smartphone game to be played more safely.
Tomy will continue to manufacture products based on the Pokémon video games, as well as other “select items.”
The Pokémon Company International ranked at #19 on the License! Global publication's Top 150 Global Licensors in 2016. The publication reported that the company had retail sales of US$3.3 billion in 2016.
The report attributes the success of The Pokemon Company in 2016 to the Pokémon GO, Pokémon Sun, and Pokémon Moon games, and the Pokémon trading card game. The magazine stated that the trading card game has 21.5 billion cards shipped globally as of 2016. The report also stated Pokémon GO has been downloaded more than 650 million times, and that the Pokémon video game franchise has sold 280 million copies before Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon went on sale in November.
License! Global stated that The Pokemon Company earned US$2.1 billion in 2015, ranking it at #29 on the 2015 list. The Pokemon Company marked its first year earning at least US$2 billion in 2014, a 33% increase from its US$1.5-billion revenue in 2013.
Source: ICv2 (Milton Griepp)