BBC Worldwide boasts a portfolio of the very best of British brands, including some of the BBC’s most well-loved content, such as Top Gear and Doctor Who, and popular pre-school brands including Hey Duggee and Go Jetters.
It’s a busy time for the Licensing teams globally – here, we take a look at what the UK and the Australia & New Zealand (ANZ) teams are up to this year.
The much anticipated new season of Top Gear has launched, airing on BBC Two in the UK from Sunday, 29th May and BBC Knowledge in Australia from Monday, 30th May.
Hosts Chris Evans, Matt LeBlanc, Sabine Schmitz, Chris Harris, Eddie Jordan, Rory Reid and The Stig have driven over 7500 miles, undertaken both on and off road challenges, tested the very latest cars and filmed in nine countries across four continents to create the new series.
For the first time, Top Gear is accompanied by Extra Gear, hosted by Rory Reid, airing on BBC Knowledge in Australia and BBC Three in the UK after Top Gear. Filmed at the famous Top Gear studio, Extra Gear brings audiences exclusive new footage, interviews, specially recorded films and behind the scenes access to the world of Top Gear.
The series brings a host of brand and licensing opportunities, with a partnership already underway with Topline Global in Australia for a range of automotive accessories.
BBC Worldwide’s popular pre-school brands continue to delight young audiences, with unique, engaging and entertaining titles such as Hey Duggee and Go Jetters.
Humour is at the heart of Hey Duggee, based around the Squirrel Club, run by a big, loveable dog called Duggee. The Squirrels take part in all kinds of activities, have adventures and earn badges for their accomplishments.
The show continues to perform strongly across both territories. In Australia, Hey Duggee has reached over 2.8 million Aussie kids to date, regularly delivering audience numbers of over 200,000 on ABC Kids, and reaching the top three highest rating broadcasts among the pre-school channels on CBeebies Australia.
In the UK, Hey Duggee has been a break out hit on the CBeebies channel and has had more than 22 million views on BBC iPlayer. After such a strong performance and great social media interaction, Hey Duggee series two will air in the UK later this year.
The brand has signed multiple license partnerships already in the UK, with master toy partner Golden Bear; Penguin publishers under the Ladybird brand; magazines and DVDs. In 2015 BBC Worldwide and mobile games developer Scary Beasties launched the first Hey Duggee pre-school app, which rocketed to number one in the kids’ app chart.
The official game Hey Duggee: The Big Badge and Hey Duggee: The Tinsel Badge has been downloaded over 150,000 times and a new app is in production for a summer 2016 release. Recent signings include outwear with Blues Clothing and underwear, nightwear and swimwear with Aykroyd TDP.
In Australia, plush toys and character figurines have been a hit with young fans since launching last year, with much of the range featuring collectable badges, reflecting the rewards that the Squirrels earn in the show.
A brand new Clubhouse play-set has been launched through distributor Jasnor, two new DVDs will be released through Roadshow; four new books will be published through Penguin Random House, and a melamine category will be launching later this year.
The first geography based pre-school TV series of its kind, Go Jetters has proved to be a hit with young fans on CBeebies Australia. The show also launched on ABC Kids in Australia in April, where it got o to a disco-grooving start, with consolidated figures making it the most watched kids program of the month.
In the UK, Go Jetters was an instant hit for the channel when it aired on CBeebies in 2015, consistently winning its time slot amongst all multi-channel broadcasters in the UK with over 7 million views on BBC iPlayer. As well as Fisher Price and Penguin, consumer products for the brand also include magazines from Immediate Media and puzzles and games from Ravensburger, plus nightwear, underwear and swimwear from Aykroyd TDP and art, stationery and activity books from Blue Sky.
World class partner Mattel is on board as the global toy partner for the brand, with toys launching first in the UK this summer, and Penguin Random House are set to release a series of books. Licensing opportunities for the brand are endless, so get on board the jetpad now!
The world’s longest running sci-fi series, Doctor Who, continues to be one of BBC Worldwide’s best-loved brands. The show has a new cast member, with the recent announcement that Pearl Mackie will play The Doctor’s new companion, and a brand new Doctor Who spin-off series Class, written and created by award winning YA writer Patrick Ness, comes to screens later this year. Starring Katherine Kelly (Coronation Street) and exciting young new talents Greg Austin, Fady Elsayed, Sophie Hopkins and Vivian Oparah, Class is set to shine a light on a whole new corner of the Whoniverse.
The hugely successful Doctor Who Black Milk clothing line was nominated in the Licensed Apparel category in the 2016 LIMA International Licensing Excellence Awards. The line of quirky, high-end, stylish and story-driven Doctor Who apparel was launched to much excitement last year, with five pieces selling out within minutes and Black Milk labelling the line as their “most successful launch ever”.